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cKCy Lady Castlemaine 

Being a Life of Barbara %)illiers 
Countess of Castlemaine, afterwards 
Duchess of Cleveland :: :: 

By Philip IV Sergeant, B.J., 

Author of " The Empress Josephine, Napoleon's Enchantress," 
" Tjbe Courtships of Catherine the Great," &C' 




With 19 Illustrations including 
a Photogravure Frontispiece 



LONDON: HUTCHINSON & CO, 

"PATERNOSTETi %0W :: :: 19/2 



SANTA BARBARA COLLEGE LIBRARY 






PREFACE 

XT may perhaps be maintained that, if Barbara 
Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess 
of Cleveland, has not been written about in many 
books, it is for a good and sufficient reason, that she 
is not worth writing about. That is not an argument 
to be lightly decided. But certainly less interesting 
women have been the subjects of numerous books, 
worse women, less influential — and less beautiful 
than this lady of the dark auburn hair and deep blue 
eyes. We know that Mr. G. K. Chesterton says that 
Charles II attracts him morally. (His words are 
'• attracts us," but this must be the semi-editorial 
" we.") If King Charles can attract morally Mr. 
Chesterton, may not his favourite attract others ? 
Or let us be repelled, and as we view the lady acting 
her part at Whitehall let us exclaim, " How differ- 
ent from the Court of . . . good King William III," 
if we like. 

Undoubtedly the career of Barbara Villiers furnishes 
a picture of one side at least of life in the Caroline 
period ; of the life of pleasure unrestrained, unfalter- 
ing — unless through lack of cash — and unrepentant. 
For Barbara did not die, like her great rival Louise de 
Keroualle (according to Saint-Simon), " very old, 



VI 



PREFACE 



very penitent, and very poor " ; or, like another 
rival, Hortense Mancini (according to Saint-Evre- 
mond), " seriously, with Christian indifference toward 
life." On the principle humani nil a me alienum 
puto even the Duchess of Cleveland cannot be con- 
sidered unworthy of attention ; but, as being more 
extreme in type, therefore more interesting than the 
competing beauties of her day. 

A few words are necessary concerning the method 
of this book. The idea has been to let contemporaries 
tell the story as far as possible, and usually in their 
own language. This involves a plentiful use of in- 
verted commas ; but it appears to me that thus a 
more vivid and faithful presentation is made of the 
spirit — or spirits — of the times than if all the material 
had been transformed into Twentieth Century shape. 
What could bring the volcanic Barbara more clearly 
before our eyes than Pepys's tale, in chapter vii, of 
her departure from Whitehall Palace, after a threat 
to murder her child before Charles's eyes, making 
" a slighting ' puh ' with her mouth " ; or Mrs. 
Manley's, in chapter ix, of her fit after Churchill 
had refused to lend her money, when " her resent- 
ment burst out into a bleeding at her nose and breaking 
of her lace, without which aid, it is believed, her 
vexation had killed her upon the spot " ? Even the 
mis-spellings have their value ; as when the Duchess 
tells Charles that " this prosiding of yours is so jenoros 
and obHging that I must be the werst wooman alive 
ware I not sensible ; no S' my hart and soule is toucht 
with this genoriste of yours." 



PREFACE vii 

Another point in the method adopted will, I fear, 
be unfavourably criticised by all except the general 
reader. Practically all the footnotes except those 
which can be read without a distraction of the at- 
tention from the thread of the narrative have been 
banished to the end of the book. Almost every 
reference to the pages of the authorities has been 
thus treated. Those readers, therefore, who do not 
care (for instance) on what page of what volume of 
the Historical MSS. Commission reports a certain 
letter is to be found, will not have their eyes irritated 
by asterisks drawing attention to " H.M.C. Rep. 15, 
App., Pt. 4." Those, on the other hand, who wish 
to verify a quotation or to read a passage which 
illustrates, without directly belonging to, the narrative 
may do so without more labour than is involved by 
turning to the Notes at the end of the book. 

As these Notes quote my sources of information, it 
is unnecessiary here to make special acknowledgment 
of indebtedness to particular authorities. But it 
\vould be ungracious not to mention the authors of 
the three ^ previous biographies of Barbara Villiers — 
the complete and careful Memoir by Mr. G. S. 
Steinman, privately printed in 1871, with Addenda in 
1874 ^^^ 1^7^ 5 t^^ attractive sketch in Mr. Allan 
Fea's Some Beauties of the Seve7iteenth Century ; and 
the wholly admirable article by Mr. Thomas Seccombe 
in the Dictionary of Natio?ial Biography. 

^ Since the above was written my attention has been called to a 
fourth biography, by Mr. Alfred Kalisch, included in TAe Lives of 
Twelve Bad Women. 



viH PREFACE 

With regard to the title of this book, " My Lady 
Castlemaine " was chosen in preference to others 
because it is so that the lady is always called by Samuel 
Pepys ; and he (who has surely more right than 
Euripides to the name of " the human ") has taught 
us how she may be looked upon with a kindly eye. 

Philip W. Sergeant. 
November, 1 9 1 1 . 



CONTENTS 



Barbara Villiers . . . . 


I 


Barbara's Marriage . . . . 


22 


The Affair of the Queen's Bedchamber 


45 


The Castlemaine Ascendancy . 


77 


The Rivals . . . . . 


• 95 


Politics and Plague . . . . 


. ii6 


The Struggle for Supremacy . 


132 


The Declining Mistress 


• 157 


Supplanted . . . . 


173 


The Portsmouth Supremacy 


199 


The Duchess in Paris 


214 


The Last Years of Charles II 


241 


"Hilaria" ..... 


261 


In Low Water . . . . . 


283 


The Duchess and Beau Feilding 


292 


Last Years and Death 


317 


Notes ..... 


323 


Index ..... 


347 



IX 



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 



Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 
Cleveland, in the character of Bellona. . . . Frontispiece 

From the painting by Sir Peter Lely at Hampton Court. 

TO FACE PAGE 

William Villiers, Second Viscount Grandison . . . 6 

From an engraving after a painting by Van Dyck. 

Philip Stanhope, Second Earl of Chesterfield . . .14 

From an engraving by E. Scriven, after a painting by Sir Peter Lely. 

Roger Palmer, Earl of Castlemaine . . . . 22 

From an engraving by Faithorne. 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 
Cleveland . . . . . . 32 

From an engraving after a miniature by Samuel Cooper. 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 

Cleveland . . . ... 44 

From a painting by Sir Peter Lely. 

Catherine of Braganza, Queen of Charles II . . . 54 

From a photograph by W. A. Mansell $^ Co., after a painting 
in the National Portrait Gallery by Jacob Huysmans. 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 
Cleveland . . . ... 76 

From an engraving by W. Sherwin. 

Frances Stewart . . ... 94 

From a photograph by W. J. Roberts after a painting by Sir Peter 
Lely at Goodwood, reproduced by permission of the Earl of 
March. 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 

Cleveland . . . . . . 108 

From an engraving by J. Enghels after a picture by Sir Peter LcIy, 

Charles the Second . . . . . 132 

From a photograph by W. A. Mansell & Co., after a painting 
by Mrs, Beale in the National Portrait Gallery. 

xi 



xii LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 

TO fACE PAGE 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 

Cleveland . . . . . . 156 

From a photograph by Emery Walker, after a copy of a picture ty 
Sir Peter Lely in the National Portrait Gallery. 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 

^, Cleveland . . . . ..174 

From a mezzotint engraving after a painting by Sir Peter Lely. 

William Wycherley . - . . . 192 

From a mezzotint engraving by I. Smith, after a painting by 
Sir Peter Lely. 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 
Cleveland, and her daughter Lady Barbara . . .214 

From a mezzotint engraving, after a painting by H. Gascar. 

Henry Fitzroy, First Duke of Grafton . . . 248 

From a mezzotint engraving by Beckett. 

The Earl of Castlemaine at the feet of Innocent XI . .268 
From a contemporary work published in Rome. 

Robert Feilding . . . . .292 

From an engraving by M. Van der Gucht. 

Barbara Villiers, Countess of Castlemaine and Duchess of 

Cleveland . . . . . . 318 

From a photograph by Emery Walker, after a painting by Sir 
Godfrey Kneller in the National Portrait Gallery. 



ERRATA. 

Page 49, 1. 5. /i?;- " father " ;-^a«"' grandfather." 

,, 271, 1. 10. For "in October" read'' or\. Septeml er 28th." 

>) 285, 1. 24. For " we do not hear " mad " Luttrell does not relate. 

,, 286, 1. 12. Delete interrogation -tnark. 



MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

CHAPTER I 
BARBARA VILLIERS 

" O Barbara, thy execrable name 
Is sure embalmed with everlasting shame." 

Charles, Earl of Dorset. 

" T LOVE not to give characters of women, especi- 
ally where there is nothing that is good to be 
said of them," says Bishop Burnet, in a fragment 
which perhaps he intended originally to incorporate in 
his famous History of My Own 'Time. He does, how- 
ever, so far overcome his reluctance to attempt femin- 
ine character-drawing as to devote a few lines, both 
here and in the History, to her who was at the time he 
wrote Duchess of Cleveland. The latter of the two 
passages has been quoted by almost every writer who 
has had occasion to allude to the Duchess. What 
Burnet says in the fragment will be less familiar to most 
readers. It is brief and much to the point : " Indeed, 
I never heard any commend her but for her beauty, 
which was very extraordinary and has been now of 
long continuance." (Her Grace was forty-two years of 
age when Burnet wrote this.) " In short, she was a 
woman of pleasure, and stuck at nothing that would 



2 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

either serve her appetites or her passions ; she was 
vastly expensive, and by consequence very covetous ; 
she was weak, and so was easily managed." 

The Bishop's opinion of the lady's beauty was 
generally shared by his and her contemporaries. To 
Sir John Reresby she is " the finest woman of her 
age " ; to Boyer, " by far the handsomest of all King 
Charles's mistresses, and, taking her person every way, 
perhaps the finest woman in England in her time." 
In the course of this book we shall see many other 
tributes of the same kind from writers of all sorts. 
Among the painters, Lely in particular paid her a still 
greater compliment, for he did her picture so often 
and so admirably that her handsome features are better 
known to us nowadays than those of any of her rivals. 
There are in existence at the present time, in England 
and abroad, enough portraits of her to fill a small 
gallery. 

If her bodily loveliness was universally recognised in 
her lifetime and is incontestable to-day, her moral 
character was a byword while she lived and has never 
found an apologist since her death. Horace Walpole 
in a letter to his friend George Montagu, it is true, 
puts her among " the historically noble " ; but, as 
he classes together under this heading " the Clevelands, 
Portsmouths, and Yarmouths " as opposed to ladies 
like " Madam Lucy Walters," it is clear to what sort 
of nobility he is referring. Except Samuel Pepys and 
King Charles II nobody appears to have discovered 
a good point about her. What Burnet thought of her 
was thought also by nearly all who came in contact with 



BARBARA VILLIERS 3 

her. But the majority of them in committing their 
judgment to paper used much stronger language. The 
satirists, indeed, went so far that their verses seldom 
permit of quotation. Some discount must be allowed 
in the lady's favour on account of the violent hatred 
stored up against her during her long rule at Whitehall, 
and breaking forth as soon as it was reasonably safe to 
give vent to it. It can scarcely be doubted, however, 
that she deserved the substance of what was said 
about her. And if the language of her censors was 
excessively vehement, she could not justly complain. 
She was herself such a shrew that we may apply to her 
what Pope said of a certain Oldham, " a very indelicate 
writer " : " He has a strong rage, but it is too much 
like Billingsgate ! " 

It would not be quite true to say that Barbara 
Villiers was a female incarnation of the spirit of 
Restoration England ; for it is a popular fallacy 
which makes the Restoration the starting-point of a 
change not merely in the externals of life, but also in 
the inner morality of this country. But she may 
fairly be said to be a distinctive product of her time, 
fostered to rank luxuriance by the special circum- 
stances of her early girlhood, rather than the off-shoot 
of a bad stock growing up like a weed in a garden where 
it has no rightful place. 

Barbara was indeed of very honourable descent 
through both of her parents. Her father, William 
Villiers, second Lord Grandison, was the eldest son of 
Sir Edward VilHers ; and of Barbara St. John, to 
whose descendants the title of her childless uncle, 



4 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Oliver St. John, Viscount Grandison of Limerick, was 
transmitted. To this grandmother Barbara, no doubt, 
the subject of the present biography, owed her name. 
Sir Edward Villiers, who himself had a family of 
seven, was one of the nine children of Sir George 
Villiers of Brokesby, Leicestershire. Sir George was 
twice married, Edward being the second son of the 
first marriage, while from the second sprang the 
famous George, first Duke of Buckingham, tvv^o other 
sons, and a daughter. Going further back, the family 
of Villiers were entitled to make the boast that they 
came over with the Conqueror, and their origin was 
referred to the Norman house of Villiers, Seigneurs de 
I'Isle Adam, which gave France a famous marshal in 
the fourteenth century, a celebrated Grand Master of 
the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem in the sixteenth, 
and, in modern days, a notable poet. After their arrival 
in England the family settled in the North Midlands, 
their estates in the early Norman times being in 
Lancashire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire. As 
we reach the Stuart period we find them closely 
connected with the last-named county, of which Sir 
George Villiers was Sheriff in 1591. The wonderful 
favour to which Sir George's son and namesake attained 
at the Court of James I led to the advancement of the 
whole of this branch, and even the children of Sir 
George's first marriage benefited by the reflected 
glory of the brilliant Duke of Buckingham ; Sir 
Edward, Barbara's grandfather, being made in turn 
English Ambassador to Bohemia and President of the 
province of Munster, in the latter of which posts he died. 



BARBARA VILLIERS 5 

Succeeding first to his father's estate in 1626 and 
then to his great-uncle's Irish viscounty of Grandison, 
Wilham VilHers made an apparently good match with 
the young Mary Bayning, one of the four daughters of 
Paul, first Viscount Bayning, of Sudbury, Suffolk. 
The Baynings were a wealthy commercial family, 
Paul's father having been Sheriff of London, and 
having married an Essex heiress ; while Paul himself 
took to wife Anne Glemham, granddaughter of the 
first Earl of Dorset. Of Mary Bayning we hear little 
beyond the fact that she married two more husbands 
after WiUiam Villiers. But from the early profligacy 
of her daughter it may be gathered that she was a bad 
mother, whatever her character may have been in other 
respects. If she bore the responsibilities of married 
life ill, there is perhaps this excuse, that she undertook 
them before attaining full womanhood. When she 
bore her only daughter Barbara, she was apparently 
no more than sixteen, and she was left a widow for the 
first time at the age of eighteen ; although that was by 
no means extraordinarily young for a widow in 
those days of very early marriages. 

Barbara Villiers was born in 1641 in the parish of 
St. Margaret's, Westminster, in which her father 
presumably had at this time a house. The register 
of St. Margaret's Church contains an entry, showing 
that the child was baptised there on November 27th, 
1641. From this it has been concluded that her birth 
took place in the autumn of the year ; but no record 
exists of the actual date and, curiously, there is no 
mention in the writings of her contemporaries of any 



6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

celebration of her birthday after she had become so 
notorious. There is extremely little known, too, of the 
fortunes of her family in the first years of her life. 
Before she was one year old there broke out what 
Evelyn calls " that bloody difference between the King 
and Parliament," in which her father, as a Villiers, 
naturally ranged himself on the side of the King. 
Viscount Grandison received a commission as " Colonel- 
General," and raised a regiment for the Royalist 
Army. At the opening of the war he captured Nant- 
wich for the King. He fell into the hands of the 
Parliamentarians at Winchester, but escaped ; took 
part in the battle of Edgehill ; and in the following 
year was at the siege of Bristol by the royal forces. 
Here he received a fatal wound on July 26th. From 
Bristol he was carried to Oxford and died in August, 
being buried in the Cathedral. His daughter some 
years after the Restoration raised above his remains 
the white marble monument which may still be seen 
at Christ Church, with a highly eulogistic epitaph 
upon it. 

But a more glorious tribute to the memory of 
Barbara^s father is to be found in the words of his 
friend Clarendon, Lord Chancellor- of England and 
author of two of the most valuable works on the 
Commonwealth and the reign of Charles H. Lord 
Grandison's loss, he declares, could never be enough 
lamented. " He was a young man of so virtuous a 
habit of mind that no temptation or provocation could 
corrupt him ; so great a lover of justice and integrity 
that no example, necessity, or even the barbarities of 




From an ciigravini;; ajtc>- a painting by Van D}\l: 

WILLIAM VILLIERS, SECOND VISCOUNT GRANDISON 



BARBARA VILLIERS 7 

this war could make him swerve from the most precise 
rules of it ; and of that rare piety and devotion that the 
court or camp could not shew a more faultless person, 
or to whose example young men might more reasonably 
conform themselves. His personal valour and courage 
of all kinds (for he had sometimes indulged so much 
to the corrupt opinion of honour as to venture himself 
in duels) was very eminent, insomuch as he was accused 
of being too prodigal of his person ; his affection, zeal, 
and obedience to the King was such as became a branch 
of that family. And he was wont to say that if he had 
not understanding enough to know the uprightness 
of the cause nor loyalty enough to inform him of the 
duty of a subject, yet the very obligations of gratitude 
to the King, on the behalf of his house, were such as 
his life was but a due sacrifice. And therefore he no 
sooner saw the war unavoidable than he engaged all his 
brethren as well as himself in the service ; and there 
were three more of them in command in the army, 
where he was so unfortunately cut off." 

So Grandison fell a victim to the war, followed to 
the grave five years later by his cousin, called by 
Aubrey " the beautiful Francis Villiers," shortly before 
the cause for which so many of the name fought was 
lost for ever by the death on the scaffold at Whitehall 
of the Royal Martyr. The widowed Viscountess, on 
April 25th, 1648, married her late husband's cousin 
Charles, second Earl of Anglesea, the undistinguished 
son of an undistinguished father, who owed his earldom 
purely to the talents and influence of his brother 
George, favourite of James I and Charles I. 



8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

After this wedding we hear no more of the mother, 
stepfather, or daughter until 1656. But Abel Boyer, 
in his Annals of Queen Anne'' s Reign, which began 
publication in 1703, in the course of his obituary- 
notice of the Duchess of Cleveland in 1709 says : 
" This Lady being left destitute of a Father when not 
above Two or Three year old, I cannot learn who had 
the Care of her, but have been informed that the 
Circumstances of the Family was Mean, and that when 
she came first to London, she appeared in a very plain 
Country dress, which being soon altered into the 
Gaiety and Mode of the Town, added a new lustre 
to that Blooming Beauty, of which she has as great a 
share as any lady in her time." 

This is the nearest approach v/hich we can find to a 
contemporary account of Barbara's first years. Boyer 
continues : " Thus furnished by bounteous Nature 
and by Art, she soon became the Object of divers 
young Gentlemen's Affections." Concerning the 
affections of one of these young gentlemen we are 
fortunate enough to have some testimony, most 
thoughtfully preserved by himself for the information 
of future generations. 

Philip Stanhope, second Earl of Chesterfield, is 
undoubtedly less known to popular fame than his 
grandson, the fourth Earl. Nevertheless, if it comes 
to a question of comparison of character, the earlier 
Chesterfield is the more remarkable man of the two. 
In his lifetime and immediately after his death, people's 
judgment upon him was chiefly dependent on the 
view which they took of his politics. He was a loyal 



BARBARA VILLIERS 9 

gentleman or an arrant knave, according as his critic 
was an adherent of the Stuarts or not. Beside his 
attachment to the Royal Family, his other most striking 
trait — his contemptuous and promiscuous devotion to 
woman — was scarcely taken into consideration. His 
value was estimated apart from the matter of his 
sexual morality ; which was, in effect, to judge but 
half the man. Seen by us to-day, as portrayed in the 
letters and autobiographical notes which he left behind 
him, he produces a very mixed impression on the mind. 
As his last thought would have been to betray his 
sovereign (whether he were Charles or James), so his 
last thought also would have been not to betray a lady, 
if he had the chance and she (as he wrote to one of 
them) were " neither ould nor ugly." 

When he came into the life of Barbara Villiers, Lord 
Chesterfield was twenty-three years of age and had 
been a widower three years. His career so far had 
been a very adventurous one. Born in 1633, he 
was only son to Henry Stanhope and Catherine, 
daughter of Lord Wotton. His paternal grandfather 
had been created Earl of Chesterfield by Charles I, on 
whose behalf he and his numerous sons fought bravely 
during the Civil War. When Philip was in his second 
year his father died and was buried at Becton Malherbe, 
Kent, the home of the Wottons. Here the child was 
brought up until the age of seven, when his mother 
married a second time. Her new husband was " John 
Poliander Kirkhoven, Lord of Hemfleet," ambassador 
of the Prince of Orange at the Court of Charles L 
With him she went to Holland, taking her little son. 



10 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

who during his eighth and ninth years was under the 
tuition of his stepfather's father," Monsieur Poliander," 
Professor of Divinity at the University of Leyden. 
" His new disciple," says the editor of the memoir 
prefixed to the Chesterfield Letters,^ " seems to have 
conceived a deep respect for the religious and erudite 
character of his instructor." He appears to have gone 
no further than admiring M. Poliander's character. 
Had he been bigger at the time when he was under the 
Professor's care we might have looked for the explana- 
tion of Chesterfield's moral lapses in some lines of an 
epitaph upon the old gentleman, written by Dr. 
Browne, who was esteemed by His Lordship " a fine 
poet." These lines ran : 

*' Sinn hee reproved with so much Art 
That hee both smote and strok'd the harte ; 
And men seem'd fond of their back slyding 
For the pleasure of a chiding." 

After leaving the delightful care of M. Poliander, 
the boy spent his next six years partly in Holland, 
partly in France. Three months of this time he was 
attached to the Court of the exiled Queen-Mother 
Henrietta Maria in Paris. For two periods, one as long 
as twelve months, he was at the Court of the Princess 
of Orange, formerly Princess Royal of England, to 
whom his mother was Governess. At the age of 

^ Letters of Thilip, Second Earl of Chesterfield (London : 1829). 
Lord Chesterfield preserved these letters, copied out by himself in a 
manuscript volume, which included also what he calls " Some short 
Notes for my remembrance of things and actidents, as they yearly 
happened to mee." 



BARBARA VILLIERS ii 

sixteen he was at an academy in Paris, where, as he 
explains in his Short Notes, " I chanced to have a 
quarrel with Monsieur Morvay, since captaine o£ the 
French king's guards, who I hurt and disarmed in a duel, 
and thereupon I left the academy." A visit to Italy 
followed, whence he returned to his native land, which 
he had not seen since he was seven, and married in 
1650 Lady Anne Percy, eldest daughter of the Earl of 
Northumberland. After three apparently peaceful 
years he lost his wife by smallpox, following childbirth, 
and went abroad again, being now only twenty-one 
years of age. His second visit to the Continent was 
marked by many adventures and great straits of 
fortune. For, as we learn from his Notes, in the year 
he left England a decree in Chancery was given against 
him and " my unkle Arthur " — Arthur Stanhope, 
sixth son of the first Earl of Chesterfield, and Member 
for Nottingham in the Convention Parliament — 
seized his estate, claiming that his nephew owed him 
ten thousand pounds. Arthur Stanhope stood very 
well with Cromwell, it appears. In the midst of 
Philip's distress, however, after he had actually been 
reduced to begging on the way from Lyon to Paris, 
news came of the death of his grandfather on Septem- 
ber 1 2th, 1656, and of his own succession to the 
earldom. 

Hurrying home at once, the new Earl not only 
managed to make up the quarrel with his uncle, but 
was so well received by the Protector that he had the 
offer of the hand of one of his daughters — either Mary, 
afterwards Countess of Falconberg, or Frances, 



12 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

afterwards wife first of Robert Rich, and then of her 
relative Sir John Russell — with a dowry of twenty- 
thousand pounds, and a high command for himself, 
naval or military according to his preference. From 
the matrimonial alliances which he either made 
or might have made during his life, it is clear that 
Chesterfield was looked upon as a most desirable match. 
But he refused the present offer, which, he says, so 
offended Cromwell that " it turned his kindness into 
hatred," the force of which he was soon destined to 
experience. 

For declining Cromwell's proposal Chesterfield had 
a good enough personal reason, since he was desirous 
at this time of marrying Mary, the only daughter of 
Lord Fairfax, who a year later became the wife of 
George Villiers, second Duke of Buckingham, after he 
had first refused the hand of Frances Cromwell, it was 
said. In fact, the Short Notes state that Chesterfield 
and Mary Fairfax were " thrise asked in St. Martin's 
church at London" (St. Martin's, Westminster). 
What was the cause of the engagement being 
broken off when it had got so far, we are not 
informed. But we do know, from the date which 
Chesterfield puts on the first letter in his collec- 
tion endorsed as " To Mrs. Villiers, afterwards Mrs. 
Pamer, since Dutches of Cleaveland," that, during 
the brief period of little more than six months between 
his return to England on his grandfather's death and 
the legal end of 1656,^ the gallant Earl not only 

1 Chesterfield reckons the year in the old st}le, as ending on March 
25th. See p. 325. 



BARBARA VILLIERS 13 

refused Cromwell's daughter and engaged himself to 
Mary Fairfax, but also made the acquaintance of 
Barbara Villiers. 

Barbara can but recently have attained her fifteenth 
birthday when she met her first lover known to history. 
She was living in the house of her stepfather, which is 
conjectured to have been somewhere in the neighbour- 
hood of St. Paul's. Lord and Lady Anglesea may have 
been in straitened circumstances, but they were too 
well connected to sink entirely out of sight. A close 
friend of Barbara, as we shall see, was a daughter of the 
Duke of Hamilton. Whether or not there was any 
previous acquaintance between Chesterfield and the 
Angleseas, before he had been back in England six 
months he was sufficiently intimate with Mistress 
Villiers to send her a letter which, if more formal 
than those which followed on either side, argues a 
friendship of exceedingly rapid growth. 

" Madam," wrote Chesterfield, who was probably 
at the time on a visit to his estate at Bretby, near the 
Peak in Derbyshire, " Cruelty and absence have ever 
been thought the most infallible remidies for such a 
distemper as mine, and yet I find both of them so 
ineffectual! that they make mee but the more incur- 
able ; seriously. Madam, you ought at least to afford 
some compassion to one in so desperat a condition, for 
by only wishing mee more f ortunat you will make mee 
so. Is it not a Strang magick in love, which gives so 
powerful! a charme to the least of your cruel words, 
that they indanger to kill a man at a hundered miles 
distance ; but why doe I complaine of so pleasant a 



14 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

death, or repine at those sufferings which I would not 
change for a diadem ? No, Madam, the idea I have of 
your perfections is to glorious to be shadowed either by- 
absence or time ; and if I should never more see the 
sun, yet I should not cease from admiring the light ; 
therefore doe not seeck to darken my weake sence by 
endeavoring to make mee adore you less ; 

For if you decree that I must dy, 
faling is nobler, then retiring, 
and in the glory of aspiring 
it is brave to tumble from the sky." 

Chesterfield was a better judge of lovemaking than 
of poetry, it must be admitted. But no doubt his 
letter gave satisfaction to the maiden heart of her to 
whom it was addressed. The affair progressed rapidly, 
and the next letters in the series preserved by His 
Lordship — it is easy to imagine with what pride this 
coxcomb of love endorsed them, " From Mrs. Villars, 
since Dutches of Cleaveland " — show Barbara writing 
in a most passionate strain, in spite of a formality of 
style which we do not find in her letters later in life. 

" My Lord [she says in the first], 

" I would fain have had the happyness to have 
seen you at church this day, but I was not suffered to 
goe. I am never so well pleased as when I am with 
you, though I find you are better when you are with 
other ladyes ; for you were yesterday all the af ternoune 
with the person I am most jealous of, and I know I 
have so little merrit that I am suspitious you love all 
women better than my selfe. I sent you yesterday a 




From an engraving by E. Scrirrn, after a fainting ly Sir Peter Lely 

PHILIP STANHOPE, SECOND EARL OF CHESTERFIELD 



BARBARA VILLIERS 15 

letter that I think might convince you that I loved 
nothing besides your selfe, nor will I ever, though you 
should hate mee ; but if you should, I would never 
give you the trouble of telling you how much I loved 
you, but keep it to my selfe till it had broke my hart. 
I will importune you no longer than to say, that I am, 
and will ever be, your constant and faithfull humble 



servant." 



Her next note is even more formal, almost Chester- 
fieldian ^ in tone. 

" My Lord, 

" I doe highly regret my own misfortune of 
being out of town, since it made mee uncapable of the 
honour you intended mee. I assure you nothing is 
likelier to make mee sett to high rate of my selfe, than 
the esteem you are pleasd to say you have for mee. 
You cannot bestow your favours and obligations on any 
that has a more pationat resentment of them, nor can 
they ever of any receive a more sincere reception than 
from, 

" My Lord, 

" Yours, &c." 

If the wording of her second letter suggests that 
Barbara had been taking a lesson in literary style from 
him to whom she was writing, it is plain from her third 

^ "No man," says the author of the memoir prefixed to Chesterfield's 
letters, " has left more elegant specimens of that peculiar courtesy, with 
which an object of the passions only is intreated with the semblance 
of respect." It seems, from a comparison of these early letters of 
Barbara Villiers with those which she wrote to Charles II in 1678, for 
instance, that Chesterfield must have edited and improved the letters 
which he transcribed into his collection. 



i6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

that he had commenced to instruct her in the art of 
which she was to become so notorious a professor before 
many more years had gone by. 

" My Lord [she says], 

" It is ever my ill fortune to be disappointed of 
what I most desire, for this afternoon I did promis to 
myselfe the satisfaction of your company ; but I 
feare I am disappointed, which I assure you is no small 
affliction to mee ; but I hope the faits may yet be so 
kind as to let me see you about five a clock ; if you will 
be at your private lodgings in Lincoln's Inn feilds, 
I will endeavour to come, and assure you of my 
being, 

" My Lord, 

" Yours, &c." 

It is not in accordance with the usual picture of life 
in England under the Commonwealth to find a girl 
between fifteen and sixteen being allowed by her 
parents, or being able without her parents' knowledge, 
to visit a young man in his private lodgings ; but we 
know of nothing to the credit of Barbara's mother ex- 
cept that her first husband was William Villiers, nor of 
anything at all to that of Lord Anglesea. The super- 
vision which they exercised over Barbara was evidently 
very slight. The next letter preserved by Chesterfield 
is written jointly by her and her chief girl friend, 
" the Lady Ann Hambleton," as he calls her. This 
Lady Anne was one of the five daughters of the 
Duchess of Hamilton, whom the battle of Worcester 
left a widow. As Lady Carnegy, and afterwards 



BARBARA VILLIERS 17 

Countess of Southesk, she figures in the Gramont 
Memoirs in a very unfavourable light. About a year 
older than Barbara, she seems at the age of seventeen 
already to have laid the foundation of her future ill 
name. 

These two young ladies write to Chesterfield, clearly 
before rising in the morning, that they are " just now 
abed together contriving how to have your company 
this afternoune," and making an appointment " at 
Ludgate Hill, about three a clock, at Butler's shop," 
which was no doubt sufficiently close to Lord Angle- 
sea's house as well as to Lincoln's Inn Fields to be 
convenient to all parties. The Lady Anne may be 
presumed to have been on a visit to her friend's home. 
She was, equally with Barbara Villiers, an admirer of 
Lord Chesterfield and equally a willing victim to the 
wiles of the rake. But retribution overtook the elder 
of the two girls. Chesterfield for some reason went to 
" Tunbridg," as he spells it, and there he received a 
letter from Barbara in which she said : " I came just 
now from the Dutches of Hambleton, and there I 
found, to my great affliction, that the Lady Ann was 
sent to Windsor, and the world sayes that you are the 
occation of it. I am sorry to hear that the having a 
kindness for you is so great a crime that people are to 
suffer for it ; the only satisfaction that one doth receive 
is, that their cause is so glorious that it is suffitient to 
preserve a tranquilHty of mind, that all their maHce 
can never discompose." 

It was true that the Lady Anne was sent away in 
disgrace. Chesterfield preserved a note from her, also 



1 8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

written in the courtly style of which he himself was 
the great exponent. " I have to good an oppinion of 
you," she says, " not to believe you gratefull, and that 
made mee think you would not be satisfied if I should 
leave you for ever without a farewell." She sends 
" this advertisement " — her note — " that you may 
give mee some Adieus with your eyes, since it is to be 
done noe other wav." 

Chesterfield's reply is interesting as showing how the 
gallants of either sex met, even as early as 1657, in 
places that after the Restoration became scandalous 
for assignations and encounters : 

" Madam, 

" Soon after your ladyship's departure, I came 
to town, and went to the Park and Spring Garden, just 
as some doe to Westminster to see those monuments, 
that have contained such great and lovely persons. 
Seriously, Madam, I may well make the comparison, 
since you, that were the soul of this little world, have 
carried all the life of it with you, and left us so dull, 
that I have quite left of the making love to five or six 
at a time, and doe wholly content myselfe with the 
being as much as is possible, 

'' Madam, 

" Yours, &c., 

" C." 

To what extent Lord Chesterfield " left of the 
making love to five or six at a time " may be gathered 
from the warmth of a letter to him from " Mrs. 
Villars," in which she speaks of doing nothing but 



BARBARA VILLIERS '' 19 

dream of him. " My life is never pleasant to mee," 
she continues, " but when I am with.you or talking of 
you ; yet the discourses of the world must make mee 
a little more circumspect ; therefore I desire you not to 
come tomorrow, but to stay till the party be come to 
town. I will not faile to meet you on Sathurday 
morning, till when I remain your humble servant." 

Could he set down all he thought (upon the subject 
of the kindness which he should show to her), says 
Chesterfield in his turn, all the paper of the town were 
too little ; " for having an object so transcending all 
that ever was before, it coins new thoughts, which 
want fresh words, to speak the language of a soul that 
might jusly teach all others how to love." 

As if to make sure that posterity should be in no 
doubt as to his ability to carry on simultaneously a 
number of affairs, Chesterfield made copies of letters 
addressed to him by other ladies about the same 
period, including one from the Lady Elizabeth 
Howard, daughter of the Earl of Berkshire and after- 
wards wife of Dryden, whose patron Chesterfield 
became later in life. He also copied a letter which he 
received from Lady Capel, sister of his late wife, in 
which she remonstrated with him in a kindly but 
serious tone about the rumours which reached her in 
the country as to his misdoings. " Though I live 
here where I know very little of what is done in the 
world," she wrote, " yet I hear so much of your 
exceeding wildness, that I am confident I am more 
censible of it than any freind you have ; you treate 
all the mad drinking lords, you sweare, you game, and 



20 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

commit all the extravagances that are insident to 
untamed youths, to such a degree that you make your 
self e the talke of all places, and the wonder of those who 
thought otherwise of you, and of all sober people ; 
and the worst of all is, I heare there is a hansom young 
lady (to both your shames) with child by you." 

Chesterfield replied impenitently, complaining that 
the world was " strangly giving to lying," saying that 
since she had not credited his former professions he 
could not now expect to be more fortunate, and 
desiring her to forbear censuring on his account one of 
the most virtuous persons living — presumably " the 
hansom young lady." Two more letters passed 
between them, from which it is evident that Lady 
Capel's esteem for her brother-in-law was forfeited 
for ever. 

Lord Chesterfield, however, had other matters to 
engage his attention as well as affairs of the heart. In 
the year after his introduction to Barbara Villiers he 
had a quarrel with a Captain John Whalley, on account 
of a piece of impertinence which he (Chesterfield) 
offered to a lady, fought a duel with him, wounded him, 
and was arrested and sent to the Tower. In 1658 he was 
three times in prison again, on political charges, " the 
fruit of his attachment to the exiled Royal Family," his 
biographer says. Cromwell was by no means inclined to 
be friendly with him now, and the charge of treason 
against the existing Government was pressed so far 
that at first his estate was sequestered. But in the end, 
" with great charge and trouble," as he expresses it 
himself, he got off. 



BARBARA VILLIERS 21 

In this stormy year Chesterfield's intimacy with 
Barbara Villiers may well have been interrupted ; and, 
indeed, he preserves no letters between himself and her 
which bear the date 1658. Moreover, apart from the 
misfortunes which befell him, an obstacle arose which 
temporarily, at least, stood in the way of their meeting. 
What this was must be left to the next chapter to 
describe. 



CHAPTER II 
BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 

" "CpURNISHED by bounteous nature and by 
art," says Boyer in a passage already quoted, 
Barbara Villiers " soon became the object of divers 
young gentlemen's affections ; and among the rest 
Roger Palmer, Esq., then a student in the Temple 
and heir to a good fortune, was so enamoured with her 
that nothing would satisfy him less than to have the 
jewel to be his own. It was reported that his father, 
then living, having strong apprehensions upon him, 
foreboding the misfortunes that would ensue, used 
all the arguments that a paternal affection could 
suggest to him, to disuade his son from prosecuting 
his suit that way, adding, T^hat if he was resolved to 
marry her^ he foresaw he should he one of the most 
miserable men in the world. The predominancy of the 
son's passion was such, that the authority and dissua- 
sions of the father availed nothing ; so that the 
marriage between him and Mrs. Villiers was con- 
summated, not long before the Restoration of King 
Charles II." 

The Roger Palmer who now enters into the story 
was born on September 3rd, 1634, ^^ Dorney Court, 
Buckinghamshire, being son of Sir James Palmer by 



22 




frotn an engy-aving by Faithoinc 

ROGER PALMER, EARL OF CASTLEMAINE 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 23 

his second wife Catherine. On both sides of the 
family his ancestry was good. Sir James Palmer was 
a Gentleman of the Bedchamber to James I, and an 
intimate friend of the Prince of Wales, afterwards 
Charles I ; his father was Sir Thomas Palmer, known 
as " the Travailer " on account of a book he published 
in 1606 entitled, An Essay of the Meanes how to make 
our Travailes into forraine Countries the more profitable 
and honourable ; and his grandfather and great- 
grandfather, Sir Henry and Sir Edward, both soldiers 
of repute. Sir James, after the death of his first wife, 
leaving him a son and a daughter, took as his second 
Catherine, widow of Sir Robert Vaughan. This lady 
was daughter to William Herbert, first Baron Powis, 
a leading Roman Catholic nobleman, whose grandson, 
the third Lord Powis, was destined to experience many 
tribulations in the company of Roger Palmer in the 
reign of terror set up by Titus Gates and his friends. 

The Palmers were well off, and Roger received his 
education at Eton and at King's College, Cambridge, 
entering the latter at the age of seventeen. Soon 
after leaving Cambridge — as it happened, just about 
the time when his future wife made the acquaintance 
of Lord Chesterfield — he was admitted a student of 
the Inner Temple, but he was never called to the Bar, 
fate having other things in store for him. How he 
came to meet the Anglesea family and to enrol himself 
among the " divers young gentlemen " who set their 
affections upon Barbara Villiers does not appear. At 
the Temple he must have been within easy reach of her 
stepfather's house, and no doubt to the ill-provided 



24 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Angleseas he appeared in the hght of a most welcome 
suitor for Barbara's hand ; especially if her name was 
already compromised by her affair with Chesterfield, 
as her mention of " the discourses of the world " 
seems to show. Sir James Palmer did not necessarily 
exhibit great foresight in auguring misfortunes for 
his son arising out of the marriage, if Barbara had 
caused herself to be talked about scandalously at the 
age of sixteen. 

But Roger was not to be denied, and on April 14th, 
1659, -^^ ^^^ Barbara Villiers were married at the 
church of St. Gregory by St. Paul's, one of the 
buildings totally destroyed by the Great Fire of 
London seven years later. 

The character of Roger Palmer is difficult to esti- 
mate. Jesse, in his Memoirs of the Court of England, 
is certainly not justified in summing it up in the words, 
" He figures through a long life as an author, a bigot, 
and a fool." The fact that he became a Roman 
Catholic and was employed by King James II in 
positions of trust, including that of special ambassador 
to the Pope, caused a prejudice against him in the 
minds of many of those who wrote about him during 
his lifetime or soon after his death. His narrow escape 
from being one of the victims of Titus Oates, and 
his persecution again after William of Orange had 
mounted the English throne, were typical of the treat- 
ment of which he was thought worthy by his enemies. 
It is not surprising, therefore, that he should by some of 
them have been classed among those husbands who, 
Gramont's friend Saint-Evremond told him, were 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 25 

typical of England — docile with regard to their wives ; 
but by no means tolerant of the inconstancy of their 
mistresses, he added. This is a question to which we 
must return later, but it may be said here that what 
Boyer calls " the misfortunes of his bed " would seem 
naturally to demand sympathy for him rather than 
contempt. That he was a fool to marry a bad woman 
cannot be denied. But he did not do so wittingly, 
nor was he the first or last man to do so. At any rate, 
after his discovery of his wife's worthlessness, we do 
not find him seeking consolation in the usual method 
in vogue at the Court of Charles II with the husbands 
of meretricious beauties. There is a singular absence 
of scandal about him, in an age when scandal left few 
indeed untouched. 

Apart from the question of sexual morality, what 
we hear of him attracts rather than repels. Those who 
were not utterly biased against him by his religion 
could not deny him some merits. Boyer says in his 
obituary notice of him : " He was a learned person, 
well vers'd in the Mathematicks. For he was the 
inventor of a horizontal globe, and wrote a book of the 
use of it." This was a pamphlet published in 1679, 
entitled The English Globe: being a stable and im- 
mobil one, performing what ordinary Globes do and fuuch 
more. He was also the author of An Account of the 
Present War between the Venetians and the Turks ; 
with the State of Candie, based on his experiences with 
the Venetian squadron in the Levant in 1664 ; 
of a history, in French, of the Anglo-Dutch war of 
1 665-1 667 ; and of several works in defence of the 



26 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Roman Catholic faith and the loyalty of the Roman 
Catholics in England, including The Catholique Apology, 
which Pepys had a sight of on December ist, 1666, 
and, without knowing who was the writer, found 
" very well writ indeed." 

Of the first months of the married life of Roger and 
Barbara Palmer nothing is known until we come once 
more upon a letter preserved by Lord Chesterfield. 
From this it appears that within less than a year of her 
marriage Barbara had renewed acquaintance with her 
lover, and that Palmer was aware of the fact and 
resented it. Under the date 1659 Chesterfield has a 
letter " from Mrs. Pamer, since Dutches of Cleaveland," 
which runs thus : 

" My Lord, 

" Since I saw you, I have been at home, and I 
find the mounser [sc. monsieur] in a very ill humer, for 
he sayes that he is resolved never to bring mee to town 
againe, and that nobody shall see me when I am in the 
country. I would not have you come to day, for that 
would displease him more ; but send mee wond. 
presently what you would advise me to doe, for I am 
ready and willing to goe all over the world with you, 
and I will obey your commands, that am whilst I live, 

" Yours." 

Barbara did not, however, elope with Lord Chester- 
field. Doubtless he had not the slightest desire that 
she should, she being only one of his very numerous 
flames. And for a time all possibility of her doing so 
was removed. Within the same year, 1659, she was 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 27 

attacked by that fearful scourge of the period, small- 
pox, which (as can be seen from any contemporary 
diary or collection of letters) ravaged almost every 
family in England without distinction of rank. As 
there is no subsequent mention of any blemish on 
Barbara's beauty, it may be gathered that she was 
not marked by the disease ; but she makes herself out to 
have a bad attack. From her sick-bed she writes to 
Chesterfield : 

" My Dear Life " [this is the only occasion on which 

she departs from the formal My Lord], 

" I have been this day extreamly ill, and the 

not hearing from you hath made mee much worse 

then otherwaves I should have been. The doctor doth 

believe mee in a desperat condition, and I must 

confess, that the unwillingness I have to leave you, 

makes mee not intertaine the thoughts of deathe so 

willingly as otherwais I should ; for there is nothing 

besides yourself e that could make me desire to live a 

day ; and, if I am never so happy as to see you more, 

yet the last words I will say shall be a praire for your 

happyness, and so I will live and dey loving you above 

all other things, who am, 

" My Lord, 

" Yours, &c." 

In other circumstances the utter abandonment of 
this letter might seem pathetic. But Chesterfield's 
reply hardly suggests that he was deeply touched. It 
is very courtly in tone. He " will not believe that you 
are not well, for the certain newse of your being sick 
would infalibly make me so ; and I doe not find 



28 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

myselfe yet fitt for another world." And so on, with 
no expression of anxiety beyond the request that she 
should send him word that she was in perfect health. 

Barbara recovered in due course,^ and announced 
the fact, in a letter not preserved. Chesterfield, in the 
country at the time, thanked her for the news — " tho 
it was but a peece of justice in you to lessen the 
apprehentions of a person who doth more participate 
in your good and bad fortune, than all the rest of 
mortals." Had he thought his coming to town, he 
added, could have been either serviceable or accept- 
able to her, she should have seen him in London 
instead of his name at the bottom of a letter. 

And now, after smallpox on Barbara's side had inter- 
rupted the intimacy, a misfortune befell Chesterfield 
which abruptly removed him from England. Near the 
beginning of Pepys's Diary, under the date of January, 
1660, the writer tells how he, when taking his wife 
and the young Edward Montagu by coach to Twicken- 
ham, on the w^ay, " at Kensington, understood how 
that my Lord Chesterfield had killed another gentle- 
man about half an hour before, and was fled." 

Without waiting for arrest and trial — as a matter of 
fact he might have done so safely, for the jury found 
it " chance-medley," it is recorded — Chesterfield made 
for Chelsea and escaped thence by water to France. 

^ In later years she was apparently emboldened by her early 
attack to be without dread of smallpox. In the midst of an epidemic 
in London, Moll Davis, her actress rival, endeavoured to alarm her 
with the suggestion that she might contract the disease and lose her 
beauty ; whereon she scornfully replied that she had no fear, for she 
had had what would prevent her from catching it. 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 29 

From here he wrote to King Charles, then at Brussels, 
asking the Royal pardon for what he had done, and 
affirming that he begged a forfeited life " to noe other 
end then to venter it on all occations in your Majesties 
service and quarrel." Charles replied in a most 
friendly strain, concluding : " I hope the time is at 
hand that will put an end to our calamities, therefore 
pull up your spirits to wellcome that good time, and be 
assured I will be allwayes very kind to you as Your 
most affectionat friend Charles R." Moreover, the 
King received him in audience at Breda in April, and 
granted him full forgiveness for his crime. Chester- 
field departed for Paris and soon afterwards was at 
Bourbon (Bourbonne), drinking the waters, whence he 
wrote a letter, of which he kept a copy, to Mrs. 
Palmer. Then, hearing of Charles's intention of 
proceeding to England, he made for Calais, took a 
boat, joined the Naseby, which had the King on board, 
and with him landed again at Dover on May 26th. 

After Barbara's recovery from her attack of small- 
pox, the movements of the Palmers are not certainly 
known. Airs. Jameson, in her Beauties of the Court of 
King Charles the Second, published in 1833, says that 
Barbara's " first acquaintance with Charles probably 
commenced in Holland, whither she accompanied her 
husband in 1659, when he carried to the King a con- 
siderable sum of money, to aid in his restoration, and 
assisted him also by his personal services." Similarly 
Jesse, writing in 1840, says that in the following 
year after their marriage the Palmers " joined the 
Court of Charles in the Low Countries, where the 



30 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

husband made himself acceptable by his loans, and the 
lady by her charms." Neither of these late writers 
mentions any authority for their statements, and 
contemporaries, so far as is known, are silent upon the 
matter. There is nothing improbable, however, in a 
visit of Roger Palmer and his wife to Holland at the 
beginning of 1660. Hither Charles moved in April, 
thinking it advisable to leave the Spanish Netherlands 
at this period, and being assured of a benevolent 
attitude on the part of the Dutch toward his attempt 
on England. Palmer's loyalty, like that of all his 
family, was well known, and he was in the expectation, 
shared by so many other Royalists in England, of a 
good post when the Restoration should come about. 
Being a wealthy man, he had every inducement to help 
King Charles with his money when money was all that 
was required to make Charles's prospects brilliant. In 
a petition which he made to the King in the following 
June for the Marshalship of the King's Bench Prison, 
he represented that he had " promoted the Royal cause 
at the outmost hazard of life and great loss of fortune." 
We cannot tell what was the hazard of life to which he 
was exposed. The great loss of fortune may well have 
been in the shape of loans to the King, who certainly 
needed cash. Do we not know from Pepys " in what a 
sad, poor condition for clothes and money the King was, 
and all his attendants . . . their clothes not being 
worth forty shillings the best of them " ? 

With regard to Barbara's acquaintance with His 
Majesty, it is certainly curious, in view of the notoriety 
of their relations from the very commencement of 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 31 

his reign, that no writer of the period should have 
recorded the time or place of their earliest meeting. 
Boyer and the author of a scurrilous tract entitled 
^he Secret History of the Reigns of King Charles II 
and King James II, printed in 1690, both state that 
Mrs. Palmer was with the King at Whitehall Palace 
on the night of his Restoration. Another account 
makes the King withdraw from the Palace to Sir 
Samuel Morland's house in Lambeth to spend the 
night after his arrival. But loyal observers of the 
entry of King Charles into London did not see Mrs. 
Palmer. Evelyn stood in the Strand on May 29th and 
beheld " a triumph of above 20,000 horse and foote, 
brandishing their swords and shouting with inex- 
pressible joy ; the wayes strew'd with flowers, the 
bells ringing, the streetes hung with tapistry, foun- 
tains running with wine ; the Maior, Aldermen, and 
all the Companies in their liveries, chaines of gold, and 
banners ; Lords and Nobles clad in cloth of silver, gold, 
and velvet ; the windowes and balconies well set 
with ladies ; trumpets, music, and myriads of people 
flocking, even so far as from Rochester, so as they were 
seven houres in passing the Citty, even from 2 in the 
afternoone till 9 at night." He sav\^, too, at Whitehall, 
when he went to present letters from Queen Henrietta 
Maria a few days later, " the eagerness of men, women, 
and children to see His Majesty and kisse his hands . . . 
so greate that he had scarce leisure to eate for some 
dayes, coming as they did from all parts of the Nation ; 
and the King being as wiUing to give them that satis- 
faction, would have none kept out, but gave accesse to 



32 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

all sorts of people." But he, who is so outspoken in 
his opinion of the royal mistress in later years, has 
nothing to say about her now. Other writers are 
equally silent. The only positive evidence in favour of 
Barbara's intimacy with King Charles at this date is 
that, in her second letter to him from Paris in 1678 ^ 
she speaks to him of Lady Sussex, her daughter born 
on February 25 th, 1661, nine months after the 
Restoration, being his child. 

Amid the throng about Whitehall, in these first 
days, of loyalists and pretended loyalists, benefactors of 
the King during his famous flight from Worcester, and 
place-hunters who could allege little or no reason why 
they should receive the honours which they coveted, 
one might think it difficult for His Majesty to carry 
on an intrigue secretly. But amid the enthusiastic 
rejoicings of the Restoration there was no inclination 
to be censorious. The time for reflection was yet to 
come, when the hopes of a Golden Age for all were 
seen to be baseless, and a fair but grasping hand was 
discovered to have a grip that none could relax on the 
royal purse. 

The Chancellor, Lord Clarendon, puts forward a 
theory of the reason of Charles's abandonment of 
himself to dissipation now which does credit to his 
loyalty. He says that the " unhappy temper and 
constitution of the royal party " — rent by " jealousies, 
murmurs, and disaffections amongst themselves and 
against each other," and all scrambling for places — 
" did wonderfully displease and trouble the king ; 

1 See p. 232. 




Froii: an engraving after a miniature I'y Sniiiuel Coofier 

BARBARA VILLIERS, COUNTESS OF CASTLEMAINE 
AND DUCHESS OF CLEVELAND 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 33 

and . . . did so break his mind, and had that opera- 
tion upon his spirits that finding he could not propose 
any such method to himself hy which he might extri- 
cate himself out of those many difficulties and laby- 
rinths in which he was involved, nor expedite those 
important matters which depended upon the goodwill 
and despatch of the parliament, which would proceed 
by its own rules and with its accustomed formalities, 
he grew more disposed to leave all things to their 
natural course and God's providence ; and by degrees 
unbent his mind from the knotty and ungrateful part 
of his business, grew more remiss in his application to 
.it, and indulged to his youth and appetite that license 
and satisfaction that it desired, and for which he 
had opportunity enough, and could not be without 
ministers abundant for any such negotiations ; the 
time itself, and the young people thereof of either sex 
having been educated in all the liberty of vice, without 
reprehension or restraint." 

The last words appear to apply with singular 
propriety to the case of Barbara Palmer ; though 
throughout his works the Chancellor carefully avoids 
mentioning her name, never designating her otherwise 
than as " the lady " when, later, he is compelled to 
allude to her. But the unfortunate Roger, at any rate, 
could not be included among the young people indicted 
by Clarendon. He was, on the other hand, one of 
those who besieged the King with requests for a 
reward for services rendered. As has been men- 
tioned, there survives a petition which he made in 
the June after Charles's return for the Marshalship of 



D 



34 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

the King's Bench Prison, representing that he had 
" promoted the Royal cause at the utmost hazard of 
H£e and great loss of fortune." It appears from the 
Domestic State Papers of Charles II that it was not 
until November 1661 that the warrant was made out 
for a grant to Palmer of the reversion of this coveted 
office after Sir John Lenthall ; and by that time much 
had happened to make the King inclined to be 
generous to him. 

If he had to wait for the royal recognition of his 
services, Roger Palmer in the meanwhile had a position 
of some credit. In the Parliament which met for the 
first time on April 25th, and played its part in welcom- 
ing the King back to England, he was the representa- 
tive for New Windsor. He took a house, at what date 
is not known, in King's Street, Westminster, described 
by Pepys as the " house which was Whally's " ; that is to 
say, it was formerly occupied by Major-General Edward 
Whalley the regicide, who had fled to America on the 
Restoration. Here Palmer resided in the early days of 
the Restoration summer with his wife, within easy 
reach of the Palace at Whitehall ; " My Lord's 
lodgings " (as Pepys calls Sir Edward Montagu's town 
house in King's Street) which were next door to the 
Palmers', giving access to the Privy Garden of the 
Palace. 

It was strange, even at the first, that Roger should 
have been ignorant of his wife's famiUarity with the 
King, if it commenced at the end of May ; but such 
seems to have been the case. The earliest contem- 
porary indication of a scandal is to be found in Pepys, 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 35 

writing on July 13th, 1660. The diarist had gone to 
the house of his kinsman and patron on business. 
" Late writing letters," he says ; " and great doings of 
music at the next house, which was Whally's ; the 
King and Dukes there with Madame Palmer, a pretty 
woman that they have taken a fancy to, to make her 
husband a cuckold. Here at the old door that did go 
into his lodgings, my Lord, I, and W. Howe, did stand 
listening a great while to the music." 

Three months afterwards, Pepys went on a Sunday 
to the Chapel Royal attached to Whitehall Palace, 
" where one Dr. Crofts [the Dean] made an indifferent 
sermon, and after it an anthem, ill sung, which made 
the King laugh." Here also he " observed how the 
Duke of York and Mrs. Palmer did talk to one another 
very wantonly through the hangings that parts the 
King's closet and the closet where the ladies sit." 
Charles and James had forgotten their upbringing ; 
for in a fragment of diary for 1677-8 kept by Dr. 
Edward Lake, chaplain and tutor to the Princesses 
Mary and Anne, we are told how " the Bishop of 
Exeter, discoursing of and lamenting the debaucherys 
of the nation, and particularly of the Court, imputed 
them to the untimely death of the old King, who was 
always very severe in the education of his present 
Majesty : insomuch that at St. Mary's in Oxford, hee 
did once hit him on the head with his staffe when he did 
observe him to laugh (at sermon time) upon the ladys 
who sat against him." 

Pepys had not yet, it appears, conceived that vast 
admiration for the royal favourite to which he so 



36 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

amusingly confesses later. But the beginning of it 
can be seen in his entry for the following April, 
when " by the favour of one Mr. Bowman " he was 
admitted to a performance before the Court, in the 
Cockpit, of The Humorous Lieutenant, by Beaumont 
and Fletcher. The play Pepys found " not very well 
done." " But," he says, " my pleasure was great to see 
the manner of it, and so many great beauties, but 
above all Mrs. Palmer, with whom the King do discover 
a great deal of familiarity." 

It is not until three months later that Pepys actually 
styles the lady " the King's mistress." Yet an event 
had occurred which might have put the matter beyond 
all question, had not Barbara Palmer's conduct nearly 
always left room for an element of doubt in such cases. 

About the end of January i66i Barbara lost her 
stepfather. His death does not appear to have 
attracted much attention. In fact, its exact date is 
not recorded, though his burial took place on February 
4th. The Earl of Anglesea made no impression on the 
affairs of his lifetime, and his stepdaughter had no 
reason to be grateful to him for any care he had 
bestowed upon her during the years when she lived 
under his roof. Had he survived a few weeks longer 
he would have seen her the mother of a child to whom 
different people assigned three fathers. Anne, after- 
wards Countess of Sussex, was born on February 
25th, and was accepted by Roger Palmer as his 
daughter. It is only Palmer's subsequent behaviour 
which prevents us from regarding him now as one of 
Saint-Evremond's " docile EngHsh husbands." As 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 37 

for the King — whether it was that he really thought 
Anne was Palmer's or that he was precluded from 
recognising her as his child, the mother not yet having 
had her position made regular even after the manner 
of such connections — he did not definitely acknow- 
ledge the paternity until the time of Anne's marriage 
to Lord Dacre in 1674. ^^ ^^^^ Y^^^ ^^ treated her 
and his undisputed daughter Charlotte on precisely 
the same footing. 

But there were many who said that the real father 
of the first child was Lord Chesterfield, claiming that 
Anne Palmer (or Fitzroy) resembled him in face and 
person. The supposed likeness, however, is the only 
evidence put forward in support of the theory. 
Chesterfield's published remains do not give any hint 
of his fatherhood to Anne. Early in 1660 he had 
married his second wife Lady Elizabeth Butler, eldest 
daughter of Charles's trusted counsellor and Claren- 
don's friend, the Duke of Ormonde. In the following 
year' we find him writing to Barbara two letters some- 
what cautiously worded, from which it is clear that he 
has somehow offended her. "After so many years' 
service, fidelity, and respect," he says in one, " to be 
banished for the first offence is very hard, especially 
after my asking so many pardons." " Let me not 
live," begins the other, " if I did believe that all the 
women on earth could have given mee so great an 
affliction as I have suffer'd by your displeasure. . . . 
If you will neither answer my letters, nor speak to mee 
before I goe out of town, it is more than an even lay I 
shall never come into it againe." 



38 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

As to what aroused Barbara's extreme displeasure 
there is no indication. Perhaps it was the mere fact of 
Chesterfield's marriage, ladies of her kind being apt, 
when they have once really bestowed their affection 
(as undoubtedly Barbara had on Chesterfield), to 
demand in return a constancy as strict as though they 
were themselves immaculate. But it was assuredly 
not her first lover's devotion to his wife which stirred 
her to anger ; for of the three ladies whom he married 
during the course of his life, the beautiful Ehzabeth 
Butler was the one for whom Chesterfield felt the 
least affection. The lively and malicious Memoirs of 
Gramont adduce some reason for this, stating that 
the second Lady Chesterfield's heart, " ever open to 
tender sentiments, was neither scrupulous in point of 
constancy nor nice in point of sincerity." Anthony 
Hamilton, who wrote the Memoirs for his brother-in- 
law, the Comte de Gramont, was cousin to the lady, 
and should have known what her character was like. 
He represents her as being on very intimate terms with 
his brother James, of whom we shall hear again. 

After the birth of her daughter, Barbara Palmer 
was in stronger favour than ever with the King. 
Pepys records various appearances of hers at the 
theatre. We have already seen her at the Cockpit in 
April. On July 23rd Pepys, in the afternoon, finding 
himself unfit for business, goes to see Suckling's 
Brennoralt for the first time. " It seemed a good play, 
but ill acted," he comments ; " only I sat before Mrs. 
Palmer, the King's mistress, and filled my eyes with 
her, which much pleased me." He was now fully 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 39 

under the spell of her beauty. Again on August z/tli 
he goes with his wife to The Jovial Crew, the King, 
the Duke and Duchess of York, and Madame Palmer 
being present ; " and my wife, to her great content, 
had a full sight of them all the while." On September 
7th he is wdth his wife at " Bartholomew Fayre with 
the puppet-show, acted to-day, which had not been 
these forty years." The Pepyses seated themselves 
" close by the King, and Duke of York, and Madame 
Palmer, which was great content ; and, indeed, I 
can never enough admire her beauty." Yet only a 
week earlier the writer is lamenting the condition of 
affairs at Court, where " things are in a very ill 
condition, there being so much emulacion, poverty, 
and the vices of drinking, swearing, and loose amours, 
that I know not what will be the end of it, but con- 
fusion " ! Pepys very successfully managed to admire 
the sinner and (in words at least) abhor the sin. But 
as it is owing to his admiration of this particular 
sinner's beauty that we owe his frequent allusions to her 
appearances in public, when other writers are silent, 
we can but feel grateful to him for his weakness. 

One more allusion to the lady is to be found in the 
Diary for the year 1661. On December 7th Pepys 
sees at the office of the Privy Seal " a patent for Roger 
Palmer (Madam Palmer's husband) to be Earl of 
Castlemaine and Baron of Limbricke in Ireland." 
He continues : " The honour is tied up to the males 
got of the body of this wife, the Lady Barbary : the 
reason whereof every body knows." 

There have come down to the present day two 



40 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

short autograph notes from King Charles to Sir 
William Morrice, one of his Secretaries of State. In 
the first, dated "Whitehall, i6 Octr.," Charles says: 
" Prepare a warrant for Mr. Roger Palmer to be an 
Irish Earle, to him and his heirs of his body gotten on 
Barbara Palmer, his now wife, with the date blank " — 
a postscript adding : " Let me have it as soon as you 
can." The second message has the date " Whitehall, 
8 Nov., morning," and runs : " Prepare a warrant for 
Mr. Roger Palmer to be barron of Limbericke and 
Earle of Castlemaine, in the same forme as the last 
was, and let me have it before dinner." 

The King was about to bestow upon her whom 
Bishop Burnet calls " his first and longest mistress " 
the earliest of the pubhc manifestations of his feelings 
for her — and the only one in which her husband was to 
share. There was a reason, or perhaps it should be 
said that there were two reasons, why he should 
specially wish to afford her gratification at this time. 
In the first place, he was preparing to take to himself 
a lawful consort ; and, secondly, Barbara was now in 
expectation of a child about whose paternity there 
was never any discussion. 

On the afternoon of Sunday, November loth, i66l, 
Pepys went and sat with Mr. Turner in his pew at St. 
Gregory's — the church which, nineteen months pre- 
viously, had witnessed the wedding of Roger Palmer 
and Barbara Villiers — and there he heard " our Queen 
Katherine, the first time by name as such, publickly 
prayed for." The proposal of a marriage between 
Charles, then Prince of Wales, and Catherine of 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 41 

Braganza had been made as far back as sixteen years 
previously by the lady's father, King Juan of Portugal, 
when she was but seven years old. It was renewed 
tentatively by the Portuguese Ambassador in England 
as soon as the Restoration looked probable, and on 
Charles's return took definite shape. Portugal, poor as 
she was through her struggle with her late masters the 
Spaniards, offered a very handsome dowry, including 
two million crusados (about -^300,000) and the 
settlements of Tangier and Bombay. The idea of the 
marriage was very popular with the Portuguese. But 
the Spanish Court was very strongly against it, and 
attempts were made to dissuade Charles from it 
through the agency of the Earl of Bristol, a Roman 
Catholic peer in high favour at Madrid, and Baron de 
Watteville, the Spanish Ambassador in London. 
Catherine was declared to be incapable of bearing 
children, while as good a dowry as Portugal offered 
was promised with any princess whom Charles might 
marry in her stead with the approval of Spain. 
Moreover, the Vatican was, so to speak, in the pocket 
of Spain at this time, and therefore Rome's blessing on 
the Anglo-Portuguese union was not to be expected. 

In the end, however, France threw her weight into 
the scale in support of Portugal, and Charles made 
up his mind to enter upon the marriage. On May 
8th, 1 66 1, the opening day of the first Parliament 
elected during his reign, he announced to the two 
Houses his intention of wedding Catherine of 
Braganza. Six weeks later the marriage treaty was 
signed, to Sir Edward Montagu, now Lord Sandwich, 



42 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

being assigned the duty of bringing over the Princess 
in the following spring. 

To no one could the signing of the treaty of 
marriage be of more serious importance than to the 
royal mistress, and the grant of a title to the Palmers 
has all the appearance of an attempt at consolation 
on the part of the King. His Majesty, however, in his 
desire to confer this honour on his favourite was met 
by a great difficulty. His Chancellor and Treasurer, 
both indispensable to him, would have nothing to do 
with Mrs. Palmer, and united together by a fast friend- 
ship stood out against Charles's designs in her regard. 
They resolved, says Bishop Burnet, " never to make 
application to her nor to let anything pass in which 
her name was mentioned." Burnet finds this conduct 
" noble in both these lords," but especially in Claren- 
don. Southampton was not much concerned whether 
he lost his office or not, and had not such powerful 
enemies. But the Chancellor " was both more pushed 
at and was more concerned to preserve himself, so that 
his firmness was truly heroical." 

Clarendon himself tells us, with regard to Barbara's 
mortal hatred for him, that she well knew " that there 
had been an inviolable friendship between her father 
and him to his death . . . and that he was an im- 
placable enemy to the power and interest she had with 
the King, and had used all the endeavours he could to 
destroy it." 

In concert with the lady the King devised a way of 
circumventing the opposition which he knew that the 
Chancellor would offer to the conferring of a title upon 



f 



BARBARA'S MARRIAGE 43 

Roger Palmer. As we have seen, he asked his Secretary 
of State for a warrant for Palmer to be an Irish earl. 
According to Burnet, this plan was first suggested by- 
Lord Orrery, one of the Lords Justices of Ireland. 
Its advantage was that the patent would not have to 
come before the Lord Chancellor of England. It was 
sent over to Ireland to pass the Great Seal there. For 
the present, the matter was kept secret from Clarendon 
and other hostile persons. What the Chancellor 
thought when the news was divulged to him by the 
King we shall see below. Here we may mention a story 
told by him of an attempt by the Earl of Bristol (who 
hated him) to make capital of the delay. Bristol went 
to the favourite and asked her whether the patent was 
passed. She answered no, whereon he told her that 
it had been taken to the Chancellor ready for the 
Great Seal, but that he, " according to his custom, 
had superciliously said that he would first speak with 
the King of it, and that in the meantime it would not 
pass ; and that if she did not make the King very 
sensible of this his insolence. His Majesty should never 
be judge of his own bounty." The lady laughed and 
" made sharp reflections on the principles of the 
Earl of Bristol. Then, pulling the warrant out of her 
pocket, where she said it had remained ever since it 
was signed, and she believed the Chancellor had heard 
of it : she was sure there was no patent prepared, and 
therefore he could not stop it at the Seal." 

Barbara, therefore, although she had the satisfaction 
of knowing that she would before long be called Lady 
Castlemaine, was compelled to wait for a while. As 



44 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

for the prospective Earl, there is no ground for 
assuming that he felt any pleasure at the bestowal of 
this public mark of the King's affection for his wife. 
Clarendon, indeed, represents Barbara as being in fear 
that he would try to stop the passing of the patent. ^ 
He was clearly now at last " sensible of his wife's 
infidelity," though until the birth, which was soon 
expected, of her first son by Charles he made no open 
break with her. 

^ Clarendon, calling Palmer "a private gentleman of a competent 
fortune, that had not the ambition to be a better man than he was born," 
says that he " knew too well the consideration that he paid for it [his 
earldom], and abhorred the brand of such a nobility and did not in a 
long time assume the title." He is said never to have taken his seat 
in the Irish House of Lords. 



I 




From ,1 piiinting; by Sir Pctey Lely 



BARBARA VILLIERS, COUNTESS OF CASTLEMAINE 
AND DUCHESS OF CLEVELAND 



CHAPTER III 

THE AFFAIR OF THE QUEEN'S 
BEDCHAMBER 

'" I "'HE period preceding the arrival in England of 
Catherine of Braganza was one of anxiety to the 
newly created Countess. She had her title, it was 
true, and probably had already extracted from Charles 
a promise of a further honour, about which we shall 
hear soon. But the approach of the royal marriage 
encouraged the tongues of those who disliked her 
ascendancy over the King to greater boldness against 
her. Pepys, on January 22nd, 1662, hears of "factions 
(private ones at Court) about Madam Palmer." 
" What it is about I know not," he adds. " But it is 
something about the King's favour to her now that 
the Queen is coming." On April 13th Mr. Pickering 
tells him how all the ladies " envy my Lady Castle- 
maine," presumably on account of her title, which 
seems now coming into general use. And on the 21st 
of the same month the diarist gets hold of a choicer 
piece of gossip from Sir Thomas Crew, how that " my 
Lady Duchess of Richmond and Castlemaine had a 
falling out the other day ; and she did call the latter 
Jane Shore, and did hope to see her come to the same 
end that she did." 

This was not the only time that the name of Jane 

45 



46 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Shore was to be coupled with the Countess's ; and 
the comparison could scarcely be gratifying to her. 
But my Lady Castlemaine probably was at no loss for 
a retort, if we may judge by her powers of abuse at 
other times. 

The uncharitable lady who made the remark on the 
present occasion was a kinswoman of Barbara, by 
birth Mary Villiers, daughter of the first Duke of 
Buckingham, and married first to Lord Herbert and 
secondly to the Duke of Richmond and Lennox, by 
whom she was left again a widow in 1655. The reason 
for the Duchess's enmity toward the Royal mistress is 
nowhere stated ; but her brother George was also 
hostile to Barbara during the greater part of his career 
at Court, so that there may have been some family 
quarrel of which we do not know the particulars. 

The ladies at Court made a shrewd guess that King 
Charles would find it difficult to shake off his mistress's 
yoke. Lady Sandwich, talking to Pepys on May 14th, 
is " afeared that my Lady Castlemaine will keep with 
the King." " And I am afeard she will not," writes 
Pepys ingenuously, " for I love her well." Seven days 
later the entry in his Diary is more artless still. He 
goes with Mrs. Pepys to Lord Sandwich's lodgings 
and walks with her in Whitehall Privy Garden. " And 
in the Privy Garden saw the finest smocks and linnen 
petticoats of my Lady Castlemaine's, laced with rich 
lace at the bottom, that ever I saw ; and did me good 
to look upon them." Going out to dinner the same 
day with his wife and Sarah, Lord Sandwich's house- 
keeper, he is told by the latter " how the King dined 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 47 

at my Lady Castlemaine's, and supped, every day and 
night the last week ; and the night that the bonfires 
were made for joy of the Queen's arrivall, the King was 
there ; but there was no fire at her door, though at all 
the rest of the doors almost in the street ; which was 
much observed. . . . But she is now a most discon- 
solate creature, and comes not out of doors since the 
King's going." After dinner they proceeded to the 
theatre and " there with much pleasure gazed upon 
her " — out of doors after all, it seems, in spite of her 
disconsolate state — " but it troubles us to see her look 
dejectedly and slighted by people already." 

The King left London and the disconsolate lady 
on May 19th, having been unable to proceed to 
Portsmouth hitherto owing to the necessity of pro- 
roguing Parliament before he went. But Catherine 
had reached England as early as the 13th. Her de- 
parture from Lisbon with Lord Sandwich, on board 
The Royal Charles, had been delayed by a dispute as 
to the form in which a most important part of her 
dowry should be paid (Portugal offering " sugars and 
other commoditys and bills of exchange " in lieu of 
the promised crusados), or she would have arrived 
earlier still. Off the Isle of Wight the Royal Charles 
was boarded by the Duke of York, accompanied by 
Lord Chesterfield among others, whom Charles had 
appointed chamberlain to his bride. In his Notes 
Chesterfield records that His Royal Highness, out of 
compHment to the King, would not salute — that is, 
kiss — Catherine, " to the end that His Majesty might 
be the first man that ever received that favour, she 



48 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

coming out of a country where it was not the fashion." 
In his Letters there is one to his friend Mr. Bates 
(written after the King had reached Portsmouth), 
which contains a description of Catherine worth trans- 
cribing : 

" You may credit her being a very extraordinary 
woman," he writes ; " that is, extreamly devout, 
extreamly discreet, very fond of her husband, and the 
owner of a good understanding. As to her person, 
she is exactly shaped, and has lovely hands, excellent 
eyes, a good countenance, a pleasing voice, fine haire, 
and, in a word, is what an understanding man would 
wish a wife. Yet, I fear all this will hardly make 
things run in the right channel ; but, if it should, I 
suppose our Court will require a new modelling." 

Charles was at Portsmouth on May 20th, and on the 
following day was married to Catherine, first secretly 
in her bedchamber, according to the Roman Catholic 
rites (on which she insisted), and then publicly by the 
Bishop of London. On his wedding day he wrote 
to the Lord Chancellor : " If I have any skill in 
visiognomy, which I think I have, she must be as good 
a woman as was ever borne." On the 25th he wrote 
again : " I cannot easily tell you how happy I think 
myselfe ; and I must be the worst man living (which 
I hope I am not) if I be not a good husband. I am 
confident never two humors were better fitted to- 
gether than ours are." How he proceeded to prove 
himself a good husband will shortly appear. In the 
meantime it may be noted that Reresby says that, 
though at Portsmouth " everything was gay and 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 49 

splendid and profusely joyful, it was easy to discern 
that the King was not excessively charmed with his 
new bride " ; and, according to Lord Dartmouth, the 
King told old Colonel Legge (i.e. William Legge, Dart- 
mouth's father) that when he first saw the Queen " he 
thought they had brought him a bat instead of a woman." 

Clarendon, recipient of his King's good resolutions 
concerning his behaviour to his wife, has much to say 
concerning Charles and Catherine during the period 
immediately following their meeting at Portsmouth. 
Speaking of the " full presumption " which there was 
that the King after his marriage would contain him- 
self within the strict bounds of virtue and conscience, 
he continues : " And that His Majesty himself had 
that firm resolution, there want not many arguments, 
as well from the excellent temper and justice of his 
own nature as from the professions he had made with 
some solemnity to persons who were believed to have 
much credit, and who had not failed to do their duty, 
in putting him in mind ' of the infinite obligations he 
had to God Alm.ighty, and that he expected another 
kind of return from him, in the purity of mind and 
integrity of life ' ; of which His Majesty was piously 
sensible, albeit there was all possible pains taken by 
that company which were admitted to his hours of 
pleasure, to divert and corrupt all those impressions 
and principles, which his own conscience and reverent 
esteem of Providence did suggest to him." 

As for the Queen, Clarendon says that she " had 
beauty and wit enough to make herself very agreeable " 
to Charles, and that " it is very certain that at their 



£ 



50 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

first meeting, and for some time after, the King had 
very good satisfaction in her, and without doubt made 
very good resolutions within himself and promised 
himself a happy and innocent life in her company, 
without any such uxoriousness as might draw the 
reputation upon him of being governed by his wife." 
Charles had observed the inconvenient effects of such 
uxoriousness as this and had protested against it, 
according to Clarendon ; though " they who knew 
him well did not think him so much superior to such 
a condescension " himself, had only the Queen been 
like some of her predecessors on the throne. The 
writer might have mentioned, and no doubt had in 
mind, Queen Henrietta Maria, the inconvenient effects 
of whose influence over her husband he had only too 
good reason to appreciate. 

But Catherine of Braganza was of a very different 
stamp from that of her mother-in-law. " Bred, 
according to the mode and discipline of her country, 
in a monastery, where she had only seen the women 
who attended her and conversed with the religious 
who resided there, and without doubt in her inclina- 
tions . . . enough disposed to have been one of that 
number," she brought with her from Portugal a large 
suite of men and women whom Clarendon considered 
" the most improper to promote that conformity in 
the Queen that was necessary for her condition and 
future happiness that could be chosen : the women 
for the most part old and ugly and proud, incapable 
of any conversation with persons of quality and a 
liberal education." (We are reminded of Evelyn's 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 51 

description of the Queen's " traine of Portuguese 
ladies in their monstrous fardingals or guard-infantas, 
their complexions olivader and sufficiently unagree- 
able " ; and of Pepys's " Portugall ladys, which are come 
to town before the Queen, . . . not handsome, and 
their farthingales a strange dress.") These ladies, 
whom the English critics found so unpleasing to the 
eye, desired to keep the Queen under their own con- 
trol and to prevent her from learning the language or 
adopting the manners and fashions of her new country. 
On reaching Portsmouth, Catherine had been met by 
some of the ladies of honour assigned to her by Charles, 
but had refused to receive them until the King him- 
self came ; " nor then with any grace or the liberty 
which belonged to their places and offices." ^ His 
Majesty had sent also a wardrobe of English clothes to 
Portsmouth, which at first Catherine declined to wear, 
preferring the farthingales in which she had arrived. 
But, finding that the King vv^as displeased and would 
be obeyed, she conformed to his wishes, much to the 
disgust of her Portuguese women. They persisted in 
dressing in their accustomed mode, regardless of the 
offence to English taste. 

On May 25th, at once his birthday and the anni- 
versary of his Restoration, Charles brought his bride 
to Hampton Court, where it was intended to pass the 

^ It is only fair to state that the Portuguese side of the case, which 
is given by Miss Strickland in Lives of the Queens of England Vol. V, 
represents Catherine as gracious to the English ladies and quite docile 
in the matter of dress. It is difficult to see, however, why Clarendon 
should misrepresent the Queen, to whom he was a better friend than 
most at the English Court. 



52 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

greater part of the summer. And here he planned to 
introduce to Catherine the lady who had illicitly 
occupied her place before her arrival in England. He 
had doubtless promised Lady Castlemaine to do so 
as early as the matter could be arranged. But the 
Countess's bodily condition prevented the intro- 
duction from taking place at once. At some time in the 
first half of June she gave birth to her eldest son Charles 
" Palmer," afterwards called Fitzroy. She had had the 
assurance, according to what Lady Sandwich told 
Pepys in May, to talk of going to Hampton Court 
for the birth. But this, perhaps, was more than even 
Charles H could tolerate at the time of his marriage, 
and the event accordingly took place at Lord Castle- 
maine's house in King Street. 

If the day of the little Charles's birth is not known, 
the register of St. Margaret's, Westminster, gives 
the date of his christening. Here we read : " 1662 
June 18 Charles Palmer Ld Limbricke, s. to y^ right 
honor''^^ Roger Earl of Castlemaine by Barbara." This 
entry is a monument to the last act but one in the 
married life of Lord and Lady Castlemaine. The Earl 
some time before the child's birth became a Roman 
Catholic, and now insisted upon his being baptized 
by a priest — which is curious, as he can have been under 
no impression that Charles was his son. He got his 
way, but at the cost of a falling out with his wife. Of 
this " Mrs. Sarah " told Pepys next month ; and, 
living next door to the Castlemaines, she was doubtless 
fully informed of all that went on there. Lady 
Castlemaine " had it again christened by a minister ; 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 53 

the King, and Lord of Oxford, and Duchesse of 
Suffolk, being witnesses ; and christened with a proviso 
that it had not already been christened." Pepys here 
writes Duchess for Countess, the godmother being 
Barbara, Countess of Suffolk, eldest daughter of Sir 
Edward Villiers, and therefore Lady Castlemaine's 
aunt. Otherwise his information was right. 

The King had practically made public acknow- 
ledgment of his fatherhood of the so-called Charles 
Palmer. He now proceeded to carry out his promise 
of presenting the mother to his wife. We cannot do 
better than give Clarendon's celebrated account of 
the scene which took place, noting that the date given 
— within a day or two after Her Majesty's being 
at Hampton Court — cannot be correct. The presenta- 
tion must have taken place after Lady Castlemaine 
had arisen from bed, and it is not likely to have pre- 
ceded the christening. 

" When the Queen came to Hampton-court," says 
Clarendon, " she brought with her a formed resolution, 
that she would never suffer the lady who was so much 
spoken of to be in her presence : and afterwards to 
those she would trust she said, ' her mother had en- 
joined her so to do.' On the other hand, the King 
thought that he had so well prepared her to give her a 
civil reception, that within a day or two after Her 
Majesty's being there, himself led her into her cham- 
ber, and presented her to the Queen, who received her 
with the same grace as she had done the rest ; there 
being many lords and other ladies at the same time 
there. But whether Her Majesty in the instant knew 



54 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

who she was, or upon recollection found it afterwards, 
she w^as no sooner sat in her chair, but her colour 
changed, and tears gushed out of her eyes, and her 
nose bled, and she fainted ; so that she was forthwith 
removed into another room, and all the company re- 
tired out of that where she was before. And this 
falling out so notoriously when so many persons were 
present, the King looked upon it with wonderful in- 
dignation, and as an earnest of defiance for the decision 
of the supremacy and who should govern, upon which 
point he was the most jealous and the most resolute 
of any man ; and the answer he received from the Queen, 
which kept up the obstinacy, displeased him more." 

One of the principal sufferers from this Royal 
quarrel was the Portuguese Ambassador, Dom Fran- 
cisco de Mello de Torres, who had done so 
much to promote the match between them and had 
been made a marquis as a reward. Already there had 
been some difficulty through the inability of Portugal 
to pay more than half the portion promised with 
Catherine. Now Charles was indignant with him 
" for having said so much in Portugal to provoke the 
Queen, and not instructing her enough to make her 
unconcerned in what had been before her time, and 
in which she could not reasonably be concerned " ; 
and Catherine, who was god-daughter to de Mello, 
still more for " the character he had given of the 
King, of his virtue and good nature." The poor 
Ambassador fell ill and nearly died before he was 
forgiven for the blunders which he had made under 
the impression that he was acting for the best. 




Fro>n a photograph by W. A. ManseUi^ Co., a/tir a painti/ig 
in the National Poi-trait Gallery by Jacob Huysiiiaiis 



CATHERINE OF liRAC.ANZA, QUEEN OF CHARLES II 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 55 

After the scene described above, Charles, according 
to the Chancellor's account, " forebore Her Majesty's 
company, and sought ease and refreshment in that 
jolly company to which in the evenings he grew every 
day more indulgent, and in which there were some 
who desired rather to inflame than to pacify his dis- 
content. And they found an expedient to vindicate 
his royal jurisdiction, and to make it manifest to the 
world that he would not be governed." This ex- 
pedient was to magnify the temper and constitution 
of his grandfather ! His Majesty King James I, they 
pointed out, " when he was enamoured, and found a 
return answerable to his merit, did not dissemble his 
passion, nor suffered it to be matter of reproach to the 
persons whom he loved ; but made all others pay them 
that respect which he thought them worthy of : 
brought them to the court, and obliged his own wife 
the Queen to treat them with grace and favour ; gave 
them the highest titles of honour, to draw reverence 
and application to them from all the court and all the 
kingdom ; raised the children he had by them to the 
reputation, state, and degree of princes of the blood, 
and conferred fortunes and offices upon them ac- 
cordingly." They reproached the present King, who 
had the same passions as his grandfather, for 
lacking " the gratitude and noble inclination to make 
returns proportionable to the obligations he received," 
and said : " That he had, by the charms of his person 
and his professions, prevailed upon the affections and 
heart of a young and beautiful lady of a noble extrac- 
tion, whose father had lost his life in the service of the 



56 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

crown. That she had provoked the jealousy and rage 
of her husband to that degree, that he had separated 
himself from her : and now the Queen's indignation 
had made the matter so notorious to the world, that 
the disconsolate lady had no place of retreat left, but 
must be made an object of infamy and contempt to all 
her sex, and to the whole world." 

This touching picture of the wronged lady (which, 
by the way, seems premature, as Lord and Lady 
Castlemaine did not definitely separate until July 14th, 
if Pepys is correct) did its part in spurring Charles on 
to bestow a fresh honour upon her. He " resolved, 
for the vindication of her honour and innocence, that 
she should be admitted of the bedchamber of the 
Queen, as the only means to convince the world that 
all aspersions upon her had been without ground. The 
King used all the ways he could, by treating the Queen 
with all caresses, to dispose her to gratify him in this 
particular, as a matter in which his honour was con- 
cerned and engaged ; and protested unto her, which 
at that time he did intend to observe, ' that he had 
not the least familiarity with her since Her Majesty's 
arrival, nor would ever after be guilty of it again, but 
would live always with Her Majesty in all fidelity for 
conscience sake.' The Queen, who was naturally more 
transported with choler than her countenance declared 
her to be, had not the temper to entertain him with 
those discourses which the vivacity of her wit could 
very plentifully have suggested to her ; but broke out 
into a torrent of rage, which increased the former 
prejudice, confirmed the King in the resolution he had 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 57 

taken, gave ill people more credit to mention her dis- 
respectfully, and more increased his aversion from her 
company, and, which was worse, his delight in those 
who meant that he should neither love his wife or his 
business, or anything but their conversation." 

When did Charles first resolve to have Lady Castle- 
maine appointed to the Queen's Bedchamber ? Claren- 
don, we see, makes him treat the appointment as a 
kind of reparation for the scorn of the world, which 
she had incurred through her connection with him. 
Did he make up his mind after the Hampton Court 
scene, or had she herself suggested the idea to him 
before Catherine's arrival in England ? Among the 
State Papers of the year 1662 there is preserved a 
warrant, dated April 2nd, for the Countess of Suffolk 
to be " Groomess of the Stole," First Lady of the 
Bedchamber, Mistress of the Robes, and Keeper of 
the Privy Purse to the Queen when her Household 
should be established ; and we read in a letter from 
Lord Sandwich to Clarendon on May 15th of 
Catherine's reception of " my Lady Suffolke and the 
ladies." But we find no warrant appointing sub- 
ordinate Ladies of the Bedchamber until as late as 
June 1663. 

It looks as if Charles, having already decided on 
Lady Castlemaine's inclusion in the Queen's House- 
hold, but anticipating trouble over it, had kept back 
the appointment of all the ladies (except the indis- 
pensable Countess of Suffolk) until he could coerce the 
Queen into accepting the whole suite. 

Now, met by Catherine's point-blank refusal to 



58 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

accept the Countess of Castlemaine, Charles called 
upon his Chancellor to take a hand in the affair. It 
would have been better for Clarendon had he declined 
the commission. But could he do so except by re- 
signing his office and retiring into private life, to expose 
himself to the assaults of his foes ? The King was 
insistent that he should undertake the task, and when 
Charles set his mind to get a thing done it was hardly 
possible to contradict him. " You and I know what 
a spark he is at going through with anything," wrote 
Anne, Countess of Sunderland, about Charles on a 
later occasion to her friend Henry Sidney. 

Clarendon is at great pains to prove his friendly 
intention toward the Queen in going to her from the 
King and to report his plain speaking in the presence of 
His Alajesty before he set out on his errand. He 
represents himself as not having heard before this " of 
the honour the King had done that lady " — the lady's 
name is, as always, unmentioned — " nor of the pur- 
pose he had to make her of his wife's bedchamber." 
With regard to the latter resolve, he says that he 
spoke to Charles about " the hard-heartedness and 
cruelty in laying such a command upon the Queen, 
which flesh and blood could not comply with." He 
reminded him how he himself had censured " the like 
excess which a neighbour King had lately used, in 
making his mistress live in the court, and in the pres- 
ence of the Queen," which Charles had declared a piece 
of ill-nature that he could never be guilty of. In his 
righteous indignation at the French King's conduct 
Charles, it appears, had said that, if ever he should be 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 59 

guilty of having a mistress after he had a wife (which 
he hoped he never should be), she should never come 
where his wife was ; for he would never add that to the 
vexation of which she would have enough without it ! 
After some truly English reflections upon the lower 
state of morality in France, the Chancellor warned his 
master that there was no surer way to lose the affections 
of his people than by indulging himself, after his 
marriage, in that excess which had already lost him 
some ground. He concluded by asking His Majesty's 
pardon for speaking so plainly and beseeching him " to 
remember the wonderful things which God had done 
for him, and for which he expected other returns than 
he had yet received." 

Few kings have been better able to bear a rating 
with good humour than Charles H. Clarendon says 
now : " The King heard him with patience enough, 
yet with those little interruptions which were natural 
to him, especially to that part where he had levelled 
the mistresses of kings and princes with other lewd 
women, at which he expressed some indignation, being 
an argument often debated before him by those who 
would have them looked upon above any other men's 
wives. He did not appear displeased with the liberty 
he had taken, but said he knew it proceeded from the 
affection he had for him ; and then proceeded upon 
the several parts of what he had said, more volubly 
than he used to do, as upon points in which he was 
conversant and had heard well debated." 

The most interesting part of the King's argument, 
however, was the impassioned appeal with which he 



6o MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

concluded on behalf of his favourite ; which, indeed, 
is so curious that no apology need be offered for 
quoting it in full from the pages of Clarendon. 
Charles said : " That he had undone this lady, and 
ruined her reputation, which had been fair and un- 
tainted till her friendship for him ; and that he was 
obliged in conscience and honour to repair her to the 
utmost of his power. That he would always avow to 
have a great friendship for her, which he owed as well 
to the memory of her father as to her own person ; 
and that he would look upon it as the highest disrespect 
to him in anybody who should treat her otherwise than 
was due to her own birth and the dignity to which 
he had raised her. That he liked her company and 
conversation, from which he would not be restrained, 
because he knew there was and should be all innocence 
in it : and that his wife should never have cause to 
complain that he brake his vows to her, if she would 
live towards him as a good wife ought to do, in 
rendering herself grateful and acceptable to him, which 
it was in her power to do ; but if she would continue 
uneasy to him, he could not answer for himself that 
he should not endeavour to seek content in other com- 
pany. That he had proceeded so far in the business 
that concerned the lady, and was so deeply engaged 
in it, that she would not only be exposed to all imagin- 
able contempt, if it succeeded not ; but his own 
honour would suffer so much that he should become 
ridiculous to the world and be thought too in pupilage 
under a governor ; and therefore he would expect and 
exact a conformity from his wife herein, which should 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 6i 

be the only hard thing he would ever require from 
her, and which she herself might make very easy, for 
the lady would behave herself with all possible duty 
and humility unto her, which if she should fail to do 
in the least degree, she should never see the King's 
face again : and that he would never be engaged to 
put any other servant about her, without first con- 
sulting with her and receiving her consent and appro- 
bation. Upon the whole," he said, " he would never 
recede from any part of the resolution he had taken 
and expressed to him : and therefore he required him 
to use all those arguments to the Queen which were 
necessary to induce her to a full compliance with what 
the King desired." 

Clarendon's account of the King's obstinate deter- 
mination to gain his end is supplemented by a letter 
which survives in the British Museum from Charles 
to his Chancellor, which, though undated, obviously 
belongs to this period and may have been written 
immediately after the interview above described. It 
runs as follows : 

" I forgott, when you weare heere last, to desire you 
to give Brodericke^ good councell, not to meddle any 
more with what concerns my Lady Castlemaine, and 
to lett him have a care how he is the authorre of any 
scandalous reports ; for if I find him guilty of any 
such thing, I will make him repent it to the last 
moment of his hfe. And now I am entered on this 
matter, I think it very necessary to give you a little 

1 " Brodericke " is Sir Alan Broderick, appointed about this time 
Provost-Marshal of Munster. 



62 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

good councell in It, least you may think that, by 
making a further stirr in the businesse, you may 
deverte me from my resolution, which all the world 
shall never do : and I wish I may be unhappy in this 
world and the world to come, if I faile in the least 
degree what I have resolved ; which is, of making my 
Lady Castlemaine of my wives bedchamber : and 
whosoever I find use any endeavour to hinder this 
resolution of myne (except it be only to myself e), I 
will be his enemy to the last moment of my life. You 
know how true a friend I have been to you. If you 
will oblige me eternally, make this businesse as easy 
as you can, of what opinion soever you are of ; for I 
am resolved to go through with this matter, lett what 
will come of it ; which againe I solemnly sweare before 
Almighty God. Therefore, if you desire to have the 
continuance of my friendship, meddle no more with 
this businesse, except it be to beare down all false 
scandalous reports, and to facilitate what I am sure 
my honour is so much concerned in : and whosoever 
I finde to be my Lady Castlemaines enimy in this 
matter, I do promise, upon my word, to be his enimy 
as long as I live. You may show this letter to my 
Ld. Lnt.^; and if you have both a minde to oblige me, 
carry yourselves like friends to me in this matter. 

" Charles R." 

To execute his commission from the King, it was 
necessary for Clarendon to have two interviews with 
the Queen. When he first approached her, before he 
could do more than express his regrets about the royal 

^ The Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland, namely, the Duke of Ormonde, 
who went to take up his post at the beginning of July 1662. Evelyn 
visited London to take leave of him and the Duchess on July 8th. 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 63 

misunderstanding, Catherine gave way to so much 
passion and such a torrent of tears that he retired, 
telHng her he would wait upon her in a fitter season. 
Next day he made a second attempt, which promised 
well at the start. Clarendon reports the dialogue with 
more humour than usually is to be found in his pages. 
When he had explained that if he said to her what 
was fit for her to hear rather than what pleased her, 
she must take it as evidence of his devotion to her, the 
Queen assured him he should never be more welcome 
to her than when he told her of her faults. " To 
which he replied that it was the province that he was 
accused of usurping with reference to all his friends." 
And so his lecture began. " He told her that he 
doubted she was little beholden to her education, that 
had given her no better information of the follies and 
iniquities of mankind, of which he presumed the 
climate from whence she came could have given more 
instances than this cold region would afford" — though 
at that time, adds Clarendon, it was indeed very hot 
in England ! 

Had Her Majesty been fairly dealt with in the matter 
of education, continued the Chancellor, she would not 
now think her condition so insupportable. He could 
not comprehend the ground of her complaint. With 
" some blushing and confusion and some tears," 
Catherine explained that she did not think she should 
have found the King engaged in his affections to 
another lady. Did she then expect, asked Clarendon, 
to find the King, at his age, of so innocent a constitu- 
tion as to be reserved for her whom he had never 



64 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

seen ? And did she believe that when it should please 
God to send a queen to Portugal she would find that 
court so full of chaste affections ? " Upon which Her 
Majesty smiled, and spake pleasantly enough, but as 
if she thought it did not concern her case, and as if 
the King's affection had not wandered, but remained 
fixed." 

The Chancellor appeared to be gaining his end. 
Assuring Catherine that, of whatever excesses His 
Majesty had been guilty in the past, he was now 
dedicating himself entirely and without reserve to 
her, and that her good fortune was in her own power, 
he persuaded her to express her gratitude toward the 
King, her desire to be pardoned for any passion or 
peevishness in the past, and her assurance of obedience 
in the future. 

With what feelings Clarendon now approached the 
second part of his task, he does not tell us. Having 
brought the Queen to so good a temper, he lost no 
time in urging her to show her resignation to whatso- 
ever His Majesty should desire of her. He then " in- 
sinuated what would be acceptable with reference to 
the lady." No sooner had he done this than the 
storm burst. Catherine exhibited " all the rage and 
fury of yesterday, with fewer tears, the fire appearing 
in her eyes where the water was." Rather than sub- 
mit to the insult of having Lady Castlemaine attached 
to her Bedchamber, she declared, she would get on 
board any little boat and go to Lisbon. Clarendon 
interrupted her with the reminder that she had not 
the disposal of her own person and with a warning not 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 65 

to speak any more about Portugal, since there were 
plenty who wished her there. He then left her v/ith 
the doubtless admirable advice, if she denied any- 
thing to the King, " to deny in such a manner as 
should look rather like a deferring than an utter 
refusal." 

It is true that the attitude assumed by the Chancellor 
toward Catherine, somewhat resembling that of master 
toward school-child, would have been more appro- 
priate had he been counselling her to the practice of 
virtue rather than the overlooking of vice. Yet we 
can see from his account of the whole affair that he 
was really much more sympathetic toward the Queen 
than he allowed himself to seem in his speech ; and 
he appears to have believed Charles's promises of 
amendment of life, if only his debt to Lady Castle- 
maine could first be paid by giving her a suitable post 
at Court. In reporting to Charles the result of his 
labours he asked him not to press the Queen in the 
matter for a day or two, but to let him first have 
another interview with her, from which he hoped to 
get better satisfaction. 

The King, however, had other advisers, who were 
anxious to see him insist on immediate submission. 
Playing upon his fear of being governed, they soon 
counteracted the Chancellor's influence, and in conse- 
quence the crisis was precipitated that very night at 
Hampton Court ; and of course the matter was soon 
known to all there. The royal couple began with 
mutual reproaches, Charles alleging stubbornness and 
want of duty ; Catherine tyranny and want of affec- 



66 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

tion. Then came threats, on Charles's part, of con- 
duct which, according to Clarendon, he never meant 
to put into execution ; on Catherine's, of a return to 
Portugal. The Queen had disregarded the Chancel- 
lor's advice about the mention of her country, and 
was at once put in a position to appreciate her folly. 
Charles told her that she would do well first to know 
how her mother would receive her ; in order to let 
her discover which he would send home all her Portu- 
guese servants, to whose counsels he imputed her 
perverseness. 

After this outburst, the relations between King 
and Queen were very strained during the remainder 
of their stay at Hampton Court. The Queen sat 
weeping in her chamber — that chamber which Evelyn 
visited on June 9th of this summer and found so 
magnificently furnished, with its state bed costing 
j^Sooo, its toilet-set of beaten and massive gold, and 
the Indian cabinets brought by Catherine herself 
from Portugal, such as had never before been seen in 
England. Or, if she were not weeping, she was in- 
dulging in violent talk over her wrongs. The King 
spent all his nights in merriment with the company 
which he preferred, and only came to the Queen's 
chamber in the morning ; " for," says Clarendon, 
" he never slept in any other place." This concession 
to his wife, however, seems to have had little effect. 
The courtiers noticed that King and Queen never 
spoke and hardly looked at one another. It is rather 
curious to read Pepys's " Observations " set down in 
his Diary at the end of June 1662. " This I take to 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER e>'] 

be as bad a juncture as ever I observed," he says. 
" The King and his new Queen minding their pleasures 
at Hampton Court. All people discontented," etc. 

Clearly Pepys was for the moment out of touch with 
Court afFairs, for otherwise he could not have written 
of Catherine, at least, " minding her pleasures at 
Hampton Court." A few days after he had penned 
his Observations he w^as given some further in- 
sight into affairs at Hampton Court, since on July 
6th Lady Sandwich told him, " with much trouble, 
that my Lady Castlemaine is still as great with the 
King, and that the King comes as often to her as ever 
he did." " At vv^hich, God forgive me," adds the 
diarist, " I am well pleased." The fears which he 
expresses earlier of the admired one's nose being put 
" out of joynt " are allayed, and he appears not to 
give a thought to the Queen. 

Charles determined to make another effort to bend 
Catherine to his will with the aid of the Chancellor, 
and a few days after the quarrel sent for him and 
informed him — though Clarendon could hardly be 
in any doubt upon the point — of the unalterableness 
of his resolution. In reply to his minister's remon- 
strances on the anger and precipitation with which he 
had acted, he allowed that he might have done better 
had he listened to advice, but said that, " besides the 
uneasiness and pain within himself, the thing was more 
spoken of in all places and more to his disadvantage, 
whilst it was in this suspense, than it would be when it 
was once executed, which would put a final end to all 
debates, and all would be forgotten." 



68 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

So the Chancellor set off once again on his errand 
to Her Majesty, and engaged with her in an argument 
which he reports very fully. But Catherine remained 
obdurate. Beginning with tears, as she acknowledged 
her excessive passion at the former interviews, and 
then listening with an incredulous smile to the 
Chancellor's protestations of the King's sincerity of 
purpose with regard to his future conduct, she finally 
declared that " the King might do what he pleased, 
but she would not consent to it." Her face, as she 
said this, showed Clarendon that she both hoped and 
believed that her obstinacy would in the end prevail 
over the King's importunity. Accordingly he left 
her, proceeded to Charles with his account of his ill 
success, and, after expressing his opinion that both 
parties were very much to blame and that " the most 
excusable would be the one who yielded first," begged 
to be excused from further employment in the affair. 
It was indeed an ill day for him when he consented 
to take any part in it whatever. Not only did his 
reputation suffer thereby at the hands of his critics, 
but his lack of success with the Queen caused a coolness 
tow^ard him on the part of Charles and certainly no 
kindlier feeling on the part of Lady Castlemaine. 

When Clarendon retired from the ungrateful busi- 
ness, the King promptly put into execution his threat 
against the Queen's Portuguese suite. As Charles I, 
but in very different circumstances, had driven out 
Henrietta Maria's French priests and women, so now 
his son named a day for Catherine's Portuguese to 
leave England ; and he insisted on his orders being 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 69 

carried out, only relenting so far as to allow her to 
retain the invalid Countess of Penalva, sister of the 
Ambassador Francisco de Mello, who had been her 
companion from a child, a few priests, and some 
inferior servants. Moreover, he avoided meeting her 
as much as he could, refused to speak to her when 
they did meet, and spent his time with those who, 
in Clarendon's words, " made it their business to laugh 
at all the world and were as bold with God Almighty 
as with any of his creatures." 

Apart from his desire to be as soon as possible 
governor in his own home, Charles seems to have 
had one reason for hastening Catherine's acquiescence 
in his demand which is not directly mentioned in any 
of the contemporary accounts of the affair. The 
Queen-Dowager, Henrietta Maria, was expected from 
France on a visit to congratulate her son and her new 
daughter-in-law on their marriage. Charles must have 
been anxious to bring about a state of peace in his 
household before his mother's arrival. He took the 
step of bringing Lady Castlemaine into Catherine's 
presence a second time, without waiting for her con- 
sent to the Bedchamber appointment. 

This we learn through a letter from Clarendon to 
Ormonde on July 17th. "The Kinge is perfectly 
recovered of his indisposicons in which you left 
him," says the Chancellor. " I wish he were as free 
from all other. I have had, since I saw you, 3 or 4 
full long conferences, with much better temper than 
before. I have likewise twice spoken at large with the 
Queene. The Lady hath becne at courte, and kissed 



70 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

her hande, and returned that night. I cannot tell 
you ther was no discomposure. . . ." 

Now we know that, four days before this letter was 
written, a great change had taken place in Lady 
Castlemaine's life. She had left her husband's house 
in King Street, and gone to the home of her uncle, 
Colonel Sir Edward Vilhers, knight-marshal of the 
royal household, who lived at Richmond Palace. 
Pepys gives July 15 th as the date on which " my Lady 
Castlemaine (being quite fallen out with her husband) 
did go away from him with her plate, jewels, and other 
best things." To confirm this date of the separation, 
there is in existence a bond, dated July i6th, 1662, 
which the Earl obtained from two of his wife's uncles, 
the Lords Suffolk and Grandison, binding them in the 
sum of ten thousand pounds to indemnify him " from 
all and every manner of debts, contracts, sum and 
sums of money now due, or that shall hereafter grow 
due, from any contract or bargain made by the Right 
Honourable Barbara, Countess of Castlemaine, or by 
any person or persons authorised by her." 

In this move of the lady to Richmond Pepys sees a 
design to get out of town that the King might come 
at her the better. " But strange it is," he comments, 
" how for her beauty I am willing to construe all this 
to the best and to pity her wherein it is to her hurt, 
though I know well enough she is " — not what she 
should be. On the 26th of the same month Mrs. Sarah 
gives Pepys some further information about the falling 
out of my Lord and my Lady, and how the latter 
had taken away from King Street " so much as every 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 71 

dish and cloth and servant, except the porter." Pepys 
continues : " He is gone discontented into France, 
they say, to enter a monastery ; and now she is coming 
back again to her house in King Street. But I hear 
that the Queen did prick her out of the Hst presented 
her by the King ; desiring that she might have that 
favour done her, or that he would send her from 
whence she came ; and that the King was angry and 
the Queen discontented a whole day and night upon 
it ; but that the King hath promised to have nothing 
to do with her hereafter. But I cannot believe that 
the King can fling her off so, he loving her too well." 

If Castlemaine went to France at all in July, it 
must have been on a very brief visit, for he was in 
London again before the end of August. But the 
break with his faithless wife was permanent, neverthe- 
less. They lived together no more after the day of 
her departure for Richmond. The husband effaced 
himself, as soon as he was allowed, from the scene of 
his disgrace.^ It was not long before, as Boyer ex- 
presses it, " the misfortunes of his bed put him into 
a vein of travelling," which continued with but occa- 
sional interruptions until late in the reign of Charles II. 
As for the wife, she carried all before her. After he 
had for the second time forced her presence on the 
Queen, Charles seems to have felt that the victory 
was won. 

We read in Clarendon that " the lady came to the 
Court, was lodged there, was every day in the Queen's 
presence, and the King in continual conference with 

1 See below, p. 82. 



72 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

her ; while the Queen sat untaken notice of : and if 
Her Majesty rose at the indignity and retired into her 
chamber, it may be one or two attended her ; but 
all the company remained in the room she left, and 
too often said those things aloud which nobody ought 
to have whispered." Charles himself threw off the 
troubled looks which he had worn at the beginning of 
the quarrel and " appeared every day more gay and 
pleasant, without any clouds in his face, and full of 
good humour." This only increased poor Catherine's 
humiliation. She saw mirth around her everywhere, 
except in her own immediate neighbourhood, and 
" the lady " being treated with more respect than 
herself, even by her own personal servants, who found 
her less able to do anything for them than the favourite. 
As for the King, all that she had of his company each 
day was " those few hours which remained of the 
preceding night and which were too little for sleep." 
The Queen-Dowager had, in the meantime, arrived 
at Hampton Court. On July 19th the King went 
down the Thames in his barge, on his way to the 
Downs, whither the Duke of York had already gone, 
to meet her. " Methought," observes Pepys, " it 
lessened my esteem of a king, that he should not be 
able to command the rain," the weather just now 
being so wet that the diarist, who was having the top 
of his house at the Navy Office reconstructed, was 
sadly inconvenienced by the superabundance of water. 
The King's impotence where the weather was con- 
cerned was to be further manifested ; for the royal 
yacht and its escorts were very roughly treated by 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 73 

a storm, and Henrietta Maria's crossing was so delayed 
that it was not until the 28th that she reached Green- 
wich and awaited at the Palace there the first call from 
Charles and his bride. By the end of the month the 
whole Court was gathered together again at Hampton 
Court preparatory to the return to Whitehall for the 
winter. 

What Henrietta Maria thought of the state of 
affairs between her son and her daughter-in-law, we 
do not hear. But, as we are not told so, we may assume 
that she did not intervene on Catherine's behalf. The 
young Queen — her twenty-fourth birthday had yet 
to come — was left entirely without any influential 
supporter in a strange land, and it speaks highly for 
her courage and determination that she could hold 
out so long in the unequal struggle. 

The move from Hampton Court to Whitehall was 
now made. Fortunately for posterity, the spectacle- 
loving Pepys was an eye-witness of the scene on 
August 23rd, in which Lady Castlemaine played a 
notable part — at least in his admiring eyes. He and 
his friend Mr. Creed vainly tried to get a boat to 
convey them from Upper Thames Street to Whitehall, 
the boatmen refusing to be tempted by an offer of 
eight shilhngs on such an occasion. 

" So we fairly walked it to Whitehall," he writes, 
" and through my Lord's lodgings we got into White- 
hall garden, and so to the Bowling-green, and up to 
the top of the new Banqueting House there, over the 
Thames, which was a most pleasant place as any I 
could have got. . . . Anon come the King and Queen 



74 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

in a barge under a canopy with 10,000 barges and 
boats, I think, for we could see no water for them, 
nor discern the King nor Queen. And so they landed 
at Whitehall Bridge, and the great guns on the other 
side went off. But that which pleased me best was 
that my Lady Castlemaine stood over against us upon 
a piece of Whitehall, where I glutted myself with 
looking on her. But methought it was strange to see 
her Lord and her upon the same place walking up 
and down without taking notice one of another, only 
at first entry he put off his hat, and she made him a 
very civil salute, but afterwards took no notice one of 
another ; but both of them now and then would take 
their child, which the nurse held in her armes, and 
dandle it. One thing more ; there happened a 
scaffold below to fall, and we feared some hurt, but 
there was none but she of all the great ladies only 
run down among the common rabble to see what 
hurt was done, and did take care of a child that 
received some little hurt, which methought was so 
noble. Anon came one there booted and spurred 
that she talked long with. And by and by, she being 
in her hair, she put on his hat, which was but an 
ordinary one, to keep the wind off. But methinks it 
became her mightily, as everything else do. The show 
being over, I went away, not weary with looking at 
her." 

This account is interesting in many ways, and not 
least for its record of an amiable trait in Lady Castle- 
maine's character which her other critics nowhere 
discover. We can hardly accuse Pepys of inventing 
it, however, in spite of his partiality for her whom it so 
delighted him to have Lady Sandwich call " your lady." 



THE QUEEN'S BEDCHAMBER 75 

The Court had hardly settled down at Whitehall 
before the victory of the mistress over the Queen was 
the talk of everyone. In the Bodleian Library at 
Oxford there is preserved an instructive letter from 
Clarendon to Ormonde, dated September 9th, 1662, 
part of which is as follows : " All things are bad with 
reference to the Lady ; but I think not so bad as you 
heare. Every body takes her to be of the bedchamber ; 
for she is always there, and goes abrode in the coach. 
But the Queene tells me that the King promised her, 
on condition she would use her as she doth others, 
that she should never live in Court : yet lodgings, I 
hear, she hath. I heare of no back staires." 

In spite of the fact, however, that everybody took 
her to be of the Bedchamber, Lady Castlemaine was 
not definitely appointed until nine months later. 
Among the Domestic State Papers of Charles II there 
is a warrant dated June ist, 1663, to admit " Lady 
Chesterfield, the Countess of Bath, the Duchess of 
Buckingham, Countess Marishal, and of Countess 
Castlemaine " as Ladies of the Bedchamber to the 
Queen. The reason for the delay in the issue of 
the warrant, after Catherine's surrender, we do not 
know ; but that she had really given way is proved 
by the scene at Somerset House mentioned at the 
beginning of the next chapter. 

Clarendon — having told how the Queen " at last, 
when it was least expected or suspected, on a sudden 
let herself fall first to conversation and then to 
familiarity, and even in the same instant to a confidence 
with the lady ; was merry with her in public, talked 



j6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

kindly of her, and in private used nobody more 
friendly " — sees her injured in the general esteem by 
her condescension, and says that " this sudden down- 
fall and total abandoning her own greatness, this low 
demeanour and even application to a person she had 
justly abhorred and worthily contemned, made all 
men conclude that it was a hard matter to know her 
and consequently to serve her." 

Poor Catherine ! What chance had she of pleasing 
anyone at such a Court as that of her husband ? And 
what wonder can there be that a deterioration in her 
character followed her early years in England. She 
arrived with piety and modesty her most marked traits. 
She became flighty (not in morals, be it said, but 
in general deportment), fond of excitement, and 
avaricious. Not having the makings of a saint, she 
refrained from becoming a sinner, but failed, in 
attempting to steer a middle course, to prove herself 
an agreeable woman. 

As for the effect of his victory on the King, Claren- 
don sees the esteem which he had in his heart for 
Catherine growing much less after her surrender, while 
" he congratulated his own ill-natured perseverance, 
by which he had discovered how he was to behave 
himself hereafter, and what remedies he was to apply 
to all future indispositions, nor had he ever after the 
same value of her wit, judgment, and understanding, 
which he had formerly." 




From an engraving; by II '. S/wrw/ii 

BARBARA VILLIERS, COUNTESS OK CASTLEMAINE 
AND DUCHESS OF CLEVELAND 



i 



CHAPTER IV 

THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 

/^N Sunday, September 7th, 1662, Samuel Pepys, 
being alone in town — his too trustful wife having 
gone on a visit to the country during the presence of 
the workmen in their house — met " Mr. Pierce the 
chyrurgeon," and was by him taken to Somerset House, 
the palace assigned to the Queen-Mother, and recently 
altered by her at a great cost. Here, in Henrietta 
Maria's presence-chamber, he saw both her and, for 
the first time, Queen Catherine, of whom he says : 
" Though she be not very charming, yet she hath a 
good, modest, and innocent look, which is pleasing." 
We will let Pepys describe the rest of the company : 

" Here I also saw Madam Castlemaine, and, which 
pleased me most, Mr. Crofts, the King's bastard, a 
most pretty spark of about 15 years old,^ who, I per- 
ceive, do hang much upon my Lady Castlemaine, and 
is always with her ; and, I hear, the Queens both of 
them are mighty kind to him. By and by in comes 
the King, and anon the Duke and his Duchess ; so 
that, they being all together, was such a sight as I 
never could almost have happened to see with so much 

^ He was in reality only thirteen and a half, being born on April 
9th, 1649. 

n 



78 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

ease and leisure. They staid till it was dark, and then 
went away ; the King and his Queen, and my Lady 
Castlemaine, in one coach and the rest in other coaches. 
Here were great store of great ladies, but very few 
handsome." 

From this scene (to which Pepys gets admittance 
with what now seems such astonishing ease) it is clear 
how far the young Queen had condescended to tolerate 
the presence of Lady Castlemaine, whom indeed we 
see " abrode in the coach " precisely as described by 
Clarendon to Ormonde. To make the situation the 
more remarkable, there is the most pretty spark, Mr. 
Crofts, who, of course, is none other than James, 
afterwards Duke of Monmouth, the King's son by 
Lucy Walter. The eldest of Charles's illegitimate 
children (with the exception of the rather mysterious 
James de la Cloche, who after becoming a Jesuit 
vanished from authenticated history about the end of 
the year 1668), the future Duke took his temporary 
surname from the " Mr. Croftes, since created Lord 
Croftes," whom Evelyn records having met on his visit 
to the exiled Court in France in 1649. Appointed by 
Charles as guardian to the nine-year-old boy in 1658, 
William Crofts also lent him a name which he con- 
tinued to bear until on his marriage to his heiress 
bride he was legally furnished with that of Scott. 

Henrietta Maria's object in taking up the boy is 
not clear, except that he was an attractive child and 
that she wished to please her son. We have Clarendon's 
testimony that she frequently had him brought to her, 
while in France, and " used him with much grace." 



THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 79 

In taking him with her to England in 1662 she was 
acting at the King's request. Charles was certainly 
making bold demands upon his wife's complacency. 
Having obliged her to take one of his mistresses as a 
lady in attendance upon her, he now introduced to her 
acquaintance his natural son by another mistress. He 
himself received the child " with extraordinary fond- 
ness," his Chancellor writes, " and was wiUing that 
everybody should believe him to be his son, though he 
did not yet make any declaration that he looked upon 
him as such, otherwise than by his kindness and 
famiharity towards him." This was sufficient, how- 
ever, within a very short space of time to arouse the 
suspicions of the Duke of York, between whom and the 
King there was rumoured a difference before the end 
of this year. 

Pepys, a fortnight after the Somerset House recep- 
tion, bears witness again to the intimacy now evidently 
existing between Lady Castlemaine and the Queen ; 
for, being in the Park on Sunday morning, he has the 
fortune to see Catherine going by coach to her chapel at 
St. James's, ready the first time that day for the Roman 
Catholic services for which her marriage treaty stipu- 
lated. The inquisitive Pepys " crowded after her " 
and succeeded in getting close to " the room where 
her closet is " — Her Majesty's private pew. He ad- 
mired much the fine altar, the priests with their fine 
copes, and many other very fine things. As for the 
music, it might be good, he allowed, but it did not 
appear so to him. He noticed that the Queen was 
very devout. " But what pleased me best was to see 



8o MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

my dear Lady Castlemaine, who, tho' a Protestant, 
did wait upon the Queen to chapel." 

In spite o£ what Clarendon wrote early in September 
to Ormonde about the mistress's lodgings, she evi- 
dently continued to make use of her husband's King 
Street house at the beginning of October. For on the 
6th of that month we find her giving a ball there, 
at which the King is present. Nor has Lord Castle- 
maine yet left England a month later, " being still 
in town, and sometimes seeing of her, though never 
to eat or lie together." It seems, therefore, as if 
Charles continued at this time to make a feeble out- 
ward show of keeping his promise to the Queen that 
the lady should never live at Court, if she would only 
use her as she did others. As we shall see, the 
Countess was not lodged at Whitehall, to public 
knowledge, until April, 1663. 

But, wherever she was residing for the moment, 
Barbara's influence was all-powerful, extending even 
to the choice of the King's ministers. On October 
17th Mr. Creed tells Pepys how at Court " the young 
men get uppermost and the old serious lords are out 
of favour." The place of Sir Edward Nicholas, 
Secretary of State, is given to Sir Henry Bennet, 
formerly private secretary to the Duke of York and 
later to be first Baron, and then Earl of, Arlington ; 
and the Privy Purse to Sir Charles Berkeley, " a most 
vicious person."^ These two and Lady Castlemaine 

^ So says Pepys, and it was the common opinion of the day. But 
the King, Clarendon tells us, loved him "every day with more passion, 
for what reason no man knew nor could imagine." King Charles 



THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 8i 

between them have the King's ear. The two, indeed, 
we hear from Clarendon, " were most devoted to the 
lady, and much depended upon her interest, and conse- 
quently were ready to do anything that would be 
grateful to her." While they made a point of keeping 
on good terms with the Chancellor, he could not but 
feel that his influence over the King declined with 
their appointment. 

In fact, a week later " Mr. Pierce the chyrurgeon " 
draws for Pepys a very gloomy picture of how things 
are going at Court. Pierce has had a promise of 
being made surgeon to the Queen, but is in doubt 
whether to take the post, since the King shows no 
countenance to any that belong to her. Her private 
physician has told Pierce that " the Queen do know 
how the King orders things, and how he carries himself 
to my Lady Castlemaine and others, as well as any- 
body ; but though she hath spirit enough, yet seeing 
that she do no good by taking notice of it, for the 
present she forbears it in poHcy ; of which I am 
very glad," adds Pepys. He notices the pubHc dis- 
content at the general state of affairs, " what with the 
sale of Dunkirk " — concluded this year at the price of 
five hundred thousand pistoles — " and my Lady 
Castlemaine and her faction at Court ; though I know 
not what they would have more than to debauch the 
King, whom God preserve from it ! " But " the 

wrote to his sister Henrietta in 1665 on receiving the news of the 
battle of Southwold Bay, at which Berkeley, then Earl of Falmouth, 
was killed : " I have had as great a losse as 'tis possible in a good frinde, 
poore C. Barckley." The Gramont Memoirs, strange to say, are 
extremely kind to Berkeley's character. 
G 



82 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

King is very kind to the Queen," we are told on 
December 15th, Dr. Gierke on this occasion being 
Pepys's informant. 

It was public property, at Court at least, that the 
favourite was expecting another child by His Majesty, 
though Lord Castlemaine, being still in town, could 
be represented as the father. Charles kept him in 
England for this very reason, in spite of his desire to 
set out on his travels. 

" Strange how the King is bewitched to this pretty 
Castlemaine ! " exclaims Pepys, as he records another 
piece of Court gossip. Very oddly. Carte in his Life 
of the Duke of Ormonde tells a story how Queen 
Catherine actually believed that the lady had be- 
witched the King. Carte is speaking of Peter Talbot 
the Jesuit, who, after the royal marriage, was one of 
the priests who officiated in the Queen's household. 

" His busy nature did not suffer him to continue long 
in that post ; he v/as always telling the Queen some 
story or other, and the uneasiness which she suffered 
in October 1662, upon Lady Castlemaine's being put 
about her, was imputed in a good measure to his in- 
sinuations. There is a Spanish word frequently used 
by lovers in that country to their mistresses, and which 
likewise signifies an enchantress. Talbot had un- 
happily made use of this expression in his discourse ; 
and the good Queen, not being used to the language of 
lovers, nor comprehending the true meaning of the 
word, presently imagined the Countess of Castlemaine 
to be a real sorceress. In consequence of this notion, 
and in great tenderness to the King's person, she 



THE CASTLETMAINE ASCENDANCY 83 

cautioned him against the lady, and expressed her 
fears in such a manner that he was puzzled a good 
while to know her meaning. But finding her very- 
serious in the matter, he inquired how she came to 
entertain so wrong a notion ; she ascribed it to Peter 
Talbot, who being now involved with the Duke of 
Bucks in contriving to make the mischief which at that 
time distracted the Court, was ordered to depart the 
kingdom." 

On New Year's Eve our most useful of informants 
has the happiness of seeing the Royal Ball at Whitehall. 
He is taken by Mr. Povy into the room where the ball 
is to be, crammed with fine ladies. " By and by comes 
the King and Queen, the Duke and Duchess, and all 
the great ones : and after seating themselves, the 
King takes out the Duchess of York ; and the Duke, 
the Duchess of Buckingham ; the Duke of Mon- 
mouth, my Lady Castlemaine ; and so other lords 
other ladies : and they danced the Bransle. After 
that, the King led a lady a single Coranto ; and then 
the rest of the lords, one after another, other ladies : 
very noble it was, and great pleasure to see. Then 
to country dances ; the King leading the first, which 
he called for ; which was, says he, ' Cuckolds all awry,' 
the old dance of England. Of the ladies that danced, 
the Duke of Monmouth's mistress, and my Lady 
Castlemaine, and a daughter of Sir Harry de Vicke's, 
were the best. The manner was, when the King 
dances, all the ladies in the room, and the Queen her- 
self, stand up : and indeed he dances rarely, and much 
better than the Duke of York. Having staid here as 



84 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

long as I thought fit, to my infinite content, it being 
the greatest pleasure I could wish now to see at Court, 
I went out, leaving them dancing." 

Yet in his closing note upon the year 1662 the 
diarist is not so dazzled by the scene which he has just 
witnessed as to close his eyes to the ill state of affairs 
at Court. He sees the King " following his pleasure 
more than with good advice he would do ; ... his 
dalliance with my Lady Castlemaine being publique, 
every day, to his great reproach ; and his favouring 
of none at Court much as those that are the confidants 
of his pleasure, as Sir H. Bennet and Sir Charles 
Barkeley ; which, good God ! put it into his heart 
to mend, before he makes himself too much contemned 
by his people for it ! " 

In the same strain he begins again his record of 1663, 
after Mrs. Sarah has told him how the King sups at 
least four or five times every week with my Lady 
Castlemaine — we hear later that he has not supped 
with the Queen for a quarter of a year and almost 
every night with the lady — and how " the very 
centrys " notice and speak about his going home in 
the morning " through the garden all alone privately." 
This and other tales make Pepys very gloomy as to the 
Court morals, from top to bottom. 

One of these visits of the King to his mistress 
attracted particular comment, and this was paid only 
a few days after Mrs. Sarah had imparted her gossip 
to Pepys. The story is found in the extremely inter- 
esting collection of letters still preserved in the French 
Foreign Office, sent by the various French ambassadors 



THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 85 

at Whitehall to Louis XIV and his Foreign Secretary, 
Hugues de Lionne. Louis was particularly anxious to 
receive from his representatives in England not only 
diplomatic intelligence, but also " the most curious 
of the Court news " ; and the ambassadors, especially 
the Comte de Cominges (who arrived in this country 
at the end of 1662 and left in 1665), ^i^ their best to 
gratify him — to the great edification of posterity. 
Cominges now, writing to Lionne, tells how Madame 
Jaret (by whom he means Lady Gerard, wife of a 
gentleman of King Charles's Bedchamber) invited the 
King and Queen to supper at her house. " All things 
were ready, and the company assembled, when the 
King left and went oif to Madame de Castlemaine's, 
where he spent the rest of the evening." It is not sur- 
prising to hear that this gave rise to much talk and 
great heart-burnings. It seems that there was ill- 
feeling between the Ladies Castlemaine and Gerard, 
and that the former chose to insult her enemy by this 
display of authority over the King. Two months 
later Pepys heard how " for some words of my Lady 
Gerard's against my Lady Castlemaine to the Queen, 
the King did the other day affront her in going 
out to dance with her at a ball, when she desired it as 
the ladies do, and is since forbid attending the Queen 
by the King ; which is much talked of, my Lord her 
husband being a great favourite." 

Pepys was himself a witness on one occasion of the 
open way in which the King now paid his visits to the 
mistress. He was proceeding with Lord Sandwich 
on January 12th to a Navy Office Committee meeting, 



86 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

under the presidency of the Duke of York. On the 
way through Whitehall garden, to the Duke's chamber, 
" a lady called to my Lord out of my Lady Castle- 
maine's lodging, telling him the King was there and 
would speak with him. My Lord could not tell what 
to bid me say at the Committee to excuse his absence, 
but that he was with the King ; nor would suffer me 
to go into the Privy Garden (which is now a through- 
passage and common), but bid me go through some 
other way, which I did ; so that I see he is a servant of 
the King's pleasures too, as well as business." 

Burnet, in one of the fragments which he did not 
incorporate in his History of my own Time, says : " My 
lady Castlemaine was now become very insolent, for 
though upon the Queen's first coming over the King's 
courtship of her was carried very secretly, yet she would 
not rest satisfied unless she were publicly owned. So 
that was done this winter " — the winter of 1662-3, ^^ 
appears to mean. Assuredly the King could scarcely 
have gone further in the direction of publicly owning 
her than in the instances which we have mentioned 
above. 

Just about this time, when the former Barbara 
Villiers was at the height of her sway over the King, 
her first lover made himself at least a nine days' 
wonder at Court by his conduct toward his second 
wife Elizabeth, his marriage with whom may have 
been the cause of Barbara's " displeasure " with him 
in 1 661. The beautiful Elizabeth had, whether in- 
tentionally or not, succeeded in attracting the atten- 
tion of the Duke of York in the autumn of 1662, and 



THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 87 

Court scandal then said that the Duchess had com- 
plained about this to the King and to her father Lord 
Clarendon, with the result that the lady was sent to 
the country. But in December she was allowed to 
return to Court, only for the scandal to break out 
again and a second banishment to follow. Pepys is 
favourable to the lady. His version of the affair, 
after a talk with Dr. Clerke, is as follows. It seems 
that Lord Chesterfield, he says, " not only hath 
been long jealous of the Duke of York, but did 
find them two talking together, though there were 
others in the room, and the lady by all opinions 
a most good, virtuous woman. He, the next day 
(of which the Duke was warned by somebody that 
saw the passion my Lord Chesterfield was in the night 
before), went and told the Duke how much he did 
apprehend himself wronged, in his picking out his 
lady of the whole Court to be the subject of his dis- 
honour ; which the Duke did answer with great calm- 
ness, not seeming to understand the reason of com- 
plaint, and that was all that passed : but my Lord did 
presently pack his lady into the country in Derby- 
shire, near the Peake." Thither he followed her him- 
self in May. 

Gramont, always more vivacious than veracious, 
tells a very long and circumstantial tale about the 
Duke and the Countess, and some green stockings, and 
Lord Chesterfield's jealousy. What historical value 
should be attached to the tale may be gathered from 
two sentences in a letter written by Sir Charles Lyttel- 
ton to Viscount Hatton, on August 8th, 1671. "As 



88 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

for the story of the silk stockmgs," says Lyttelton, " I 
heare now there was no such thing but an old story 
revived of the last King's time." And in a postscript 
he adds : " The news I tell of the Dutch admirall is 
all false ; so is that of the green stockings." 

With the wife on whom he imposed a very different 
code of married life from that which he followed him- 
self, Chesterfield, according to his own account, spent 
the whole of the summer of 1663 at Bretby. There 
is no evidence that Lady Castlemaine felt any par- 
ticular interest in His Lordship now. She was too 
much occupied in other affairs to cherish any longer 
the passion of her girlhood. She had, if rumours were 
true, already commenced to play the King false, if 
that expression be permissible in such circumstances. 
The scandalmongers attributed to her a kindness to- 
ward Sir Charles Berkeley, soon to be made Viscount 
Fitzharding, whom the King used as a go-between 
between himself and her. And Anthony Hamilton 
suggests that his eldest brother was on very friendly 
terms, for a time at least, with the lady. This was 
James Hamilton, Groom of the Bedchamber to the 
King, described by his junior as the best-dressed man 
at Court, the liveliest wit, most polished courtier, most 
accomplished dancer, and most general lover — this last 
point a merit of some account, he observes, in a 
court entirely given up to gallantry. The Gramont 
Memoirs also mention Henry Jermyn as already 
favoured by her. Later the name of Lord Sandwich 
is added to the list, and Pepys is evidently inclined to 
believe the report. 



THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 89 

It would be rash to say that Lady Castlemaine took 
undue risks in allowing herself to be talked about in 
connection with the courtiers of the King her master, 
for she proved that she knew eminently well how to 
handle Charles II to her own advantage. But it is a 
fact that, while these, stories were beginning to circulate 
about her conduct, there were others just coming to 
birth concerning a wandering of the King's affections. 

At the end of January 1663, however, the Castle- 
maine influence is still supreme. One Captain Ferrers, 
a lively blade, tells Pepys of " my Lady Castlemaine's 
and Sir Charles Barkeley being the great favourites at 
Court and growing every day more and more." On 
February ist Pepys and Creed, walking in Whitehall 
Garden, " did see the King coming privately from 
my Lady Castlemaine's ; which is a poor thing for a 
prince to do." A week later Ferrers regales the two as 
they walk together in the Park on Sunday afternoon, 
watching people sliding on the ice, with various " Court 
passages " — which, in truth, were very scandalous tales. 
One of these introduces, for the first time in the Diary, 
the name of the lady who actually did what Pepys had 
vainly feared Catherine of Braganza would do, namely, 
" put out of joynt " my Lady Castlemaine's nose. 
Lady Castlemaine was represented as having, a few 
days before, invited " Mrs. Stewart " to an entertain- 
ment. " And at night began a frolique that they two 
must be married, and married they were, with ring and 
all other ceremonies of church service, and ribbands, 
and a sack posset in bed, and flinging the stocking." 
Ferrers concluded the story with the intervention of 



90 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

the King and the downfall of " pretty Mrs. Stewart " ; 
which is quite inconsistent with the prevailing belief 
of a very evil-minded Court about the young lady, and 
may therefore be dismissed as an effort of the imagina- 
tion — as perhaps the whole story was, in spite of 
another of the diarist's gossips affirming the general 
acceptation of it. 

But about the appearance on the scene of la belle 
Stuart and the King's infatuation with her there is no 
doubt. Frances, elder daughter of Dr. Walter Stewart 
or Stuart,^ third son of Lord Blantyre, and therefore 
connected with the Royal Family, came to England 
at the beginning of 1663 from Paris, where she had 
lived under the protection of her mother and of 
Henrietta Maria, to be a maid of honour to Queen 
Catherine. She was about fifteen when she reached 
the English Court and was commended to Charles by 
his sister Henrietta, Duchess of Orleans, as " the 
prettiest girl in the world and one of the best fitted 
of any I know to adorn a Court." Of her prettiness 
there can be no doubt, whether we judge by the 
testimony of a multitude of her contemporaries or by 
the surviving portraits of her. As to her capacity to 
adorn a Court, there are more ways than one of inter- 
preting this claim. Frances does not appear to have 
possessed intelligence to match her looks. It was 
hardly possible, say the Gramont Memoirs indeed, 
for a woman to have less wit or more beauty. She 
lived under four sovereigns without making any more 

^ We shall in future keep to Stewart, which was the usual spelling 
of Frances's family name in her own day. 



THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 91 

enduring mark upon the history of their reigns than 
by her appearance as Britannia on our copper coins. 
She was certainly circumspect, and as a maid of 
honour passed for modest. The Marquis de Ruvigny, 
one of Louis's agents in England, declares her to be 
" one of the most beautiful girls and one of the most 
modest to be seen," even when he is transmitting some 
dubious reports as to her position with regard to the 
King. Evelyn evidently believed her to be chaste up 
to the time of her marriage ; and " good Mr. Evelyn," 
as Pepys calls him, was quite capable of expressing 
himself forcibly on the subject of ladies whom he did 
not consider virtuous. Clarendon, who thought the 
King's passion to be stronger for Frances Stewart than 
for any other woman, says that she " carried it with 
that discretion and modesty that she made no other 
use of it than for the convenience of her own fortune 
and subsistence, which was narrow enough." Accord- 
ing to the Gramont Memoirs, her virtue broke down 
before her marriage, overcome by the King's grant 
of her request to allow her to be the first to ride in a 
new carriage just arrived from France ! But these 
memoirs cannot be treated as good evidence unless 
strongly supported by other testimony. The secret 
of the girl's power over Charles seems to have been a 
combination of beauty, artless conversation, and an 
obduracy which piqued his vanity and attracted him 
by its rarity at his Court. 

Frances Stewart soon begins to figure largely in the 
writings of the day. On February 23rd she is one 
of the ladies noticed by Pepys at a performance of 



92 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Dryden's first play The Wild Gallant, at the King's 
private theatre at Whitehall. " My Lady Castle- 
maine was all worth seeing to-night," he says, " and 
little Steward." He is unsuspicious of the coming 
struggle as yet, and records, on the same date, the 
omnipotence of the Royal mistress. " This day was I 
told that my Lady Castlemaine hath all the King's 
presents, made him by the peers, given to her, which 
is a most abominable thing ; and that at the great 
ball she was much richer in Jewells than the Queen 
and Duchess put both together." He might have 
added, had he been aware of it, that it was she who 
was the chief patron of Dryden's play, " so poor a 
thing " though he thought it. For Dryden wrote to 
thank Lady Castlemaine for her encouragement of 
him at this time in an adulatory verse epistle. 

For a time we only catch glimpses of Lady Castle- 
maine — at Whitehall, after service in the Chapel 
Royal, where among the fine ladies she is " above all, 
that only she I can observe for true beauty," as Pepys 
quaintly expresses it ; in Hyde Park, where the King 
and she, riding in separate coaches, greet one another 
at every turn of the Ring, round which it was the 
fashion to drive ; at St. George's Feast at Windsor, 
when the newly created Duke of Monmouth was 
married to the Lady Anne Scott, only child of the 
second Earl of Buccleugh, with whom he got a very 
large fortune. Unfortunately Pepys was not present 
at the ceremony at Windsor. But Gramont, who 
probably was, has a few words about it in the Memoirs. 
" New festivals and entertainments celebrated this 



THE CASTLEMAINE ASCENDANCY 93 

marriage," he says. " The most effectual method to 
pay court to the King was to outshine the rest in 
brilHancy and grandeur. . . . The fair Stewart, then 
in the meridian of her glory, attracted all eyes, and 
commanded universal respect and admiration. The 
Duchess of Cleveland endeavoured to eclipse her at 
this festival by a load of jewels and by all the artificial 
ornaments of dress. But it was in vain ; her face 
looked rather thin and pale, from the commencement 
of a third or fourth pregnancy, which the King was 
still pleased to place to his own account ; and, as for 
the rest, her person could in no respect stand in com- 
petition with the grace and beauty of Miss Stewart." 

Gramont is, as usual, very loose in his chronology, 
for Barbara was not to be Duchess of Cleveland for 
another seven years, nor by any means could Frances 
Stewart be described as in " the meridian of her 
glory " yet. The maid of honour had only very 
recently reached England, and the rivalry between her 
and the royal mistress had barely commenced. The 
elder woman (not yet twenty-two herself) was so 
far quite pleased to patronise the little Stewart, as 
Gramont himself bears witness later. 

On the Court's return from the festivities at Windsor 
on April 24th, Charles took a step which must have 
settled the doubts of the most charitably minded 
persons in the kingdom as to the position of the 
Countess of Castlemaine at his Court. Pepys, of course, 
has the story early, in fact, on the very next day, how 
" she is removed from her own home to a chamber in 
Whitehall, next to the King's own ; which I am sorry 



94 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

to hear, though I love her much." This news is con- 
firmed by Dr. Pierce soon after, and was quite true, 
for Lady Castlemaine had left King Street and taken 
up her abode in the buildings which were included in 
Whitehall Palace. 

Curiously, the move to Whitehall had scarcely been 
made — and also the warrant for creating Lady Castle- 
maine and other ladies of the Bedchamber to the 
Queen passed — when there spread about still more 
definite and persistent rumours of an alteration in the 
King's affections. Scandal proceeds to couple Frances 
Stewart's name with the mistress's, as though they 
were on a similar footing with His Majesty ; and, 
more astonishing still, the Queen " begins to be 
brisk and play like other ladies, and is quite another 
woman from what she was," so that there are specula- 
tions whether the King may not be made to like 
her better and forsake Lady Castlemaine and 
Mrs. Stewart. Even Pepys seems for a while shaken 
in his allegiance. On June 13th he sees his idol, " who, 
I fear, is not so handsome as I have taken her for, 
and now she begins to decay something ! " This is 
also the opinion of Mrs. Pepys, " for which I am sorry," 
says her husband. He makes handsome amends, how- 
ever, a year later, when he speaks of " Mrs. Stewart, 
who is indeed very pretty, but not like my Lady 
Castlemaine, for all that." 




From a photog7nJ>h by 11'. J. Roberts, a/h. ,i /uiuuuix ri ..// J'lUr Lcly 
at Goodwood, reproduced by permission of tlic Earl of iSfarch 

FRANCES STEWART 



CHAPTER V 

THE RIVALS 

" 'TpO Westminster Hall," says Pepys, on July 3rd, 
1663, " and there meeting with Mr. Moore 
he tells me great news that my Lady Castlemaine is 
fallen from Court, and this morning retired. He 
gives me no account of the reason of it, but that it is 
so : for which I am sorry : and yet if the King do it 
to leave off not only her but all other mistresses, I 
should be heartily glad of it, that he may fall to look 
after business." 

Next day, as he is dining v^ith Creed very well 
for lid. at the King's Head ordinary, " a pretty 
gentleman " in their company confirms the news and 
further tells them of " one wipe " the Queen had 
recently given the mistress. It appears that the latter 
" came in and found the Queen under the dresser's 
hands, and had been so long. ' I wonder Your Majesty,' 
says she, ' can have the patience to sit so long a- 
dressing ? ' — ' I have so much reason to use patience,' 
says the Queen, ' that I can very well bear with it.' " 
This gentleman thinks it may be that the Queen has 
commanded Lady Castlemaine to retire from Court, 
" though that is not likely " in Pepys's opinion. 

Nor was it the fact. What had actually happened 

95 



96 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

is known to us from a letter which the Comte de 
Cominges wrote to Louis XIV on July 5 th and which 
is among the correspondence from the London Em- 
bassy preserved in the French Foreign Office. " There 
was a great quarrel the other day among the ladies," 
he reports, " which was carried so far that the King 
threatened the lady at whose apartments he sups every 
evening that he would never set foot there again if he 
did not find the Demoiselle with her," 

The lady with whom King Charles sups every 
evening is, of course, Lady Castlemaine ; and the 
Demoiselle is Frances Stewart. The Gramont 
Memoirs, which do not record the falling out between 
Charles and Lady Castlemaine, have a good deal to 
say about the way in which the latter took up the 
young maid of honour when she noticed that the 
King paid attention to her. " She was not satisfied," 
writes Gramont through his biographer, " v\dth ap- 
pearing without any degree of uneasiness at a prefer- 
ence which all the Court began to remark ; she even 
affected to make Miss Stewart her favourite, and in- 
vited her to all the entertainments she made for the 
King . . . being confident that, whenever she thought 
fit, she could triumph over all the advantages which 
these opportunities could afford Miss Stewart ; but 
she was quite mistaken." 

The actual quarrel between Charles and his mistress 
now was brief, and if her absence from the Royal 
coaches in the Ring at Hyde Park on July 5th 
was remarked, it was not because she had been ban- 
ished from Court. On the contrary, according to the 



THE RIVALS 97 

story which Captain Ferrers brought Pepys some 
weeks later — a story more worthy of belief than some 
that he told — " her going away was a fit of her own 
upon some slighting words of the King." These 
would, of course, be connected with his request that 
he might see Frances Stewart in her apartments if 
she desired a continuance of his favour. Lady Castle- 
maine, in a rage, called for her coach and drove off 
to her uncle's house at Richmond, whither we have 
seen her fly before. But Charles, for all that he was 
found by people to be stranger and colder than 
ordinary to her, could not spare her. The very next 
morning after her departure, he made a pretence of 
going hunting at Richmond, called to see her and 
make friends, and " never was a-hunting at all." 

So my Lady Castlemaine was back at Whitehall, 
commanding the King as much as ever and flouting 
all who crossed her will. Another of the loquacious 
Captain's stories shows the King still absolutely at her 
beck and call. On July 21st her cousin, the Duke of 
Buckingham, gave a private entertainment to Charles 
and Catherine at Wallingford House (on the site of 
the present Admiralty Ofhce), and did not invite her. 
She was that day at the house of her aunt. Lady 
Suffolk, where she was heard to say : " Well, much 
good may it do them ! For all that I will be as merry 
as they." So she went home and had a great supper 
prepared. Presently to her from Wallingford House 
came King Charles, attended by Lord Sandwich, and 
spent the night. Not long after we hear of the King 
being fetched to her from the very Council-table by Sir 



H 



98 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Charles Berkeley. She certainly could not complain 
now that she was not openly acknowledged. 

Nevertheless, though she might exhibit her sway 
over His Majesty in this public way, one thing which 
she could not do was to prevent him admiring other 
ladies, and in particular Frances Stewart. This 
" cunning slut " — the expression is Lord Sandwich's — 
who provoked Charles so much that he once hoped to 
" live to see her ugly and willing," held out stead- 
fastly against the royal offers. She refused to share 
Lady Castlemaine's dishonourable post, while the 
latter, to her mortification, was compelled to treat 
her as a friend and never be without her. Meanwhile 
she could not but know that people were beginning 
to compare her beauty unfavourably with that of her 
rival and, though she herself was but twenty-two, to 
talk of her decay. As soon as the King could get a 
husband for Mrs. Stewart, they said (and, it seems, 
with considerable prescience), my Lady Castlemaine's 
nose would really be out of joint. 

We have heard Pepys's somewhat disillusioned 
criticism on his favourite lady's looks in the June of 
this year. A still more interesting passage in the Diary, 
in which he describes her and the younger beauty 
side by side, is to be found under the date July 13th. 
This day, walking in Pall Mall, he finds that the King 
and Queen are riding with the ladies of honour 
in the Park, and waits with a great crowd of gal- 
lants to see their return. Thus he describes the 



scene 



By and by the King and Queen, who looked in 



THE RIVALS 99 

this dress (a white laced waistcoat and a crimson short 
pettycoat, and her hair dressed a la negligence) mighty 
pretty ; and the King rode hand in hand with her. 
Here was also my Lady Castlemaine rode among the 
rest of the ladies ; but the King took, methought, 
no notice of her ; nor when they 'light did anybody 
press (as she seemed to expect, and staid for it) to 
take her down, but was taken down by her own gentle- 
man. She looked mighty out of humour and had a 
yellow plume in her hat (which all took notice of), and 
yet is very handsome, but very melancholy : nor did 
anybody speak to her, or she so much as smile or speak 
to anybody. I followed them up into Whitehall, and 
into the Queen's presence, where all the ladies walked, 
talking and fiddling with their hats and feathers, and 
changing and trying one another's by one another's 
heads, and laughing. But it was the finest sight to 
me, considering their great beautys and dress, that 
ever I did see in all my life. But, above all, Mrs. 
Stewart in this dress, with her hat cocked and a red 
plume, with her sweet eye, little Roman nose, and 
excellent taille, is now the greatest beauty I ever saw, 
I think, in my life ; and, if ever woman can, do exceed 
my Lady Castlemaine, at least in this dress : nor do I 
wonder if the King changes, which I verily believe is 
the reason of his coldness to my Lady Castlemaine." 

The impressionable Pepys was, indeed, extremely 
smitten with Mrs. Stewart this day, as students of the 
Diary will remember. 

On July 23rd the King and Queen went down to 
Tunbridge Wells, the latter having been recommended 



100 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

by her doctors to try the none too pleasant waters 
there as a cure for that which undoubtedly did more 
than anythincr to make Charles so unfaithful to her, 
her lack of children. She should have gone in May, 
but so short of money was the Royal Household that 
the visit could not be made until nearly the last week 
in July. The King was in London again four days 
later to prorogue Parliament and then returned to 
the Wells, where he and Catherine are seen to be on 
excellent terms. Dr. Pierce, who has just purchased 
the place of Groom of the Privy Chamber to Her 
Majesty, reports to Pepys that she " is grown a very 
debonnaire lady, and now hugs him [the King], and 
meets him gallopping upon the road, and all the 
actions of a fond and pleasant lady that can be." The 
King, says Pierce, " has a chat now and then of Mrs. 
Stewart, but there is no great danger of her, she being 
only an innocent, young, raw girl ; but my Lady 
Castlemaine, who rules the King in matters of State, 
and do what she list with him, he believes is now 
falling quite out of favour." 

Lady Castlemaine, it seems, accompanied the Court 
to Tunbridge Wells, although she, unlike the Queen, 
was expecting very shortly the birth of a child. But 
she can have played little part in the amusements of 
the Court, of which Cominges gives a glimpse in the 
sheet of Court news for August, sent by him to 
Louis. " One might well call these the Waters of 
Scandal," he writes, " for they have come near ruining 
the good names of the maids and the ladies (I mean 
those who are there without their husbands). It 



THE RIVALS loi 

took a whole month, and more in some cases, for them 
to justify themselves and save their honour ; and it is 
even said that a few of them have not yet got clear. 
This is the cause why the Court returns in eight days' 
time, leaving one of the Queen's ladies behind to pay 
for the others." 

After quitting Tunbridge Wells, the Court moved 
to Bath for a month, in order that the Queen might 
continue her cure. They set out from Vauxhall on 
August 26th, There is no mention of the Countess 
of Castlemaine accompanying them. On the contrary, 
after a conversation with Mrs. Sarah, on September 
22nd, Pepys writes : " This day the King and Queen 
are to come to Oxford. I hear my Lady Castlemaine 
is for certain gone to Oxford to meet him, having lain 
within here at home this week or two supposed to 
have miscarried." 

Mrs. Sarah was usually well informed, and her very 
considerable error in one particular here seems to 
show that there was a good deal of mystery about the 
birth of Henry, second son of Lady Castlemaine, 
afterwards Duke of Grafton. Moreover, the date of 
the event is supposed to have been September 20th, 
1663. Yet the mother starts two days later upon 
the journey from London to Oxford, which cannot 
have been easy for her at such a time, and is next heard 
of in lodgings near Christ Church Meadows on the 
morning of the 24th. 

King Charles, we know, hesitated for some years to 
recognise Henry (Palmer or Fitzroy, as he was at first 
variously called) as his child. Lord Castlemaine had 



UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA 
SANTA BARBARA COLLEGE LIBRAI 



102 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

long ceased living with his wife, and is not heard of in 
England later than November 1662. Scandal sug- 
gested that the father's name was Charles Berkeley, 
Lord Fitzharding ; and his office of go-between to the 
King and the lady naturally aroused such suspicions in 
a Court so prone to suspect. 

The royal visit to Oxford, for which Lady Castle- 
maine left London so soon after Henry's birth, lasted 
a week. The King and Queen, coming from the west 
by way of Cirencester, dined with Lord Chancellor 
Clarendon, who was also Chancellor of the University, 
at his house at Cornbury, eight miles outside the city, 
on the 23rd. Arriving from the other direction. Lady 
Castlemaine may be assumed not to have been present 
(she could only have been so uninvited) at the country 
home of the man whom she was determined to ruin ; 
nor to have assisted, therefore, at the two receptions 
of the royal party, first by the University authorities 
at the last mile-stone as thev entered Oxford, and then 
by the Mayor and other civic dignitaries. She did not 
see Charles take from the hands of the Chancellor the 
" large fair Bible," covered with black plush, bossed 
and clasped with silver double-gilt, etc., of which 
Antony Wood tells ; nor, from those of the Mayor, 
the purse of white satin, embroidered with the King's 
arms and " beset with aglets and pearles," containing 
j^300 in gold. But she may have seen the further 
reception at Christ Church, when the King, arriving 
by torchlight through a lane made down St. Giles's by 
the city militia, was welcomed by the Dean, in whose 
lodgings he was to sleep. 



THE RIVALS 103 

At any rate, she was with Charles again early next 
day, for Wood has the following entry under Septem- 
ber 24th : " The King betimes in the morning went 
to Xt. Ch. meed [Christ Church Meadows] to view 
and see where the workers were, and called upon the 
countess of Castlemaine, who then lay in Dr. Richard 
Gardiner's lodgings next to the fields. . . ." Some 
blotted words follow, which seem to indicate that Wood 
at first expressed an opinion either on the King's 
behaviour or on the lady's character, but afterwards 
expunged it. 

We hear no more of Barbara during this, her first 
visit to Oxford. After a busy week, which included 
in its programme an audience to the University 
authorities at Christ Church, a Convocation at the 
Schools, a fox-hunt ending at Cornbury, and two 
touchings for the King's Evil in the Cathedral choir, 
the whole Court set off for Whitehall on the 30th. 
Pepys notes the return of King and Court, " from their 
progress," on October ist. He also says, in a later 
entry, that he hears that my Lady Castlemaine " is 
in as great favour as ever, and that the King supped 
with her the very first night he came from Bath," by 
which he seems to mean the night of the return to 
Whitehall. Two other suppers he also tells of, given 
by Lady Castlemaine to His Majesty at this time. For 
one of these there was a chine of beef to roast, but 
her kitchen was flooded by the Thames and the cook 
came to tell her what had happened. " Zounds ! " said 
my Lady, " you must set the house on fire, but it shall 
be roasted ! " But, by carrying the chine elsewhither 



104 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

to roast, the supper was, in the end, prepared without 
burning the house. 

It seems as if nothing could induce Charles to fore- 
go these suppers at Lady Castlemaine's ; not even a 
grief which had all the appearance of sincerity. In 
the middle of October Queen Catherine suddenly fell 
most seriously ill. What her complaint was it is 
difficult to make out. Mrs. Sarah says the spotted 
fever, and that she is as full of the spots as a leopard ; 
whereon Pepys remarks, not very lucidly, " which is 
very strange that it should not be more known ; but 
perhaps it is not so." On the 17th the doctors gave 
but little hope of her recovery. When the King came 
to see her that morning she told him she willingly left 
all the world but him — at which His Majesty was much 
afflicted, according to Arlington, who described the 
scene in a letter to the Duke of Buckingham. The 
Gramont Memoirs supply further information : 

" The Queen was given over by her physicians : 
the few Portuguese women that had not been sent 
back to their own country filled the Court with dole- 
ful cries ; and the good nature of the King was much 
affected with the situation in which he saw a princess 
whom, though he did not love her, yet he greatly 
esteemed. She loved him tenderly, and, thinking that 
it was the last time she should ever speak to him, 
she told him that ' the concern he showed for her 
death was enough to make her quit life with regret ; 
but that, not possessing charms sufficient to merit his 
tenderness, she had at least the consolation in dying 
to give place to a consort who might be more worthy 
of it and to whom Heaven, perhaps, might grant a 



THE RIVALS 105 

blessing that had been refused to her.' At these words 
she bathed his hands with some tears, which he thought 
would be her last ; he mingled his own with hers ; 
and, without supposing she would take him at his word, 
he conjured her to live for his sake." 

Gramont, or Hamilton, cannot omit the sting in 
the tail of the anecdote. But Charles scarcely de- 
served to escape the cynical suggestion when he could 
give occasion for the French Ambassador to write as 
follows to his master : 

" I am just come from Whitehall, where I left the 
Queen in a state in which, according to the doctors, 
there is little room for hope. She received extreme 
unction this morning. . . . The King seems to me 
deeply affected. He supped, nevertheless, yesterday 
evening at Madame de Castlemaine's and had his usual 
conversations with Mademoiselle Stewart, of whom 
he is very fond. There is already talk of his marrying 
[again]. Everyone gives him a wife according to his 
inclination, and there are some who do not look for 
her out of England." 

If any confirmation were required of what Cominges 
says of the King's behaviour, there is Mrs. Sarah's 
report to Pepys, " that the King do seem to take it 
much to heart . . . but, for all that, that he hath 
not missed one night since she was sick, of supping 
with my Lady Castlemaine." Perchance, in his state 
of low spirits His Majesty felt more than ever the 
need of that company and conversation from which 
he once told Clarendon he would not be restrained. 



io6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

The critical state of the Queen's illness, whatever 
it was, continued well into the second half of October, 
so that people began to prepare for the possibility of 
going into mourning. But on the 24th she was out of 
danger. " The Queen is in a good way of recovery," 
writes Pepys that day ; " and Sir Francis Pridgeon 
[Prujean] hath got great honour by it, it being all 
imputed to his cordiall, which in her dispaire did give 
her rest and brought her to some hope of recovery." ^ 
The pious Queen, however, imputed her restoration 
to health to her husband's prayers ; and the Poet 
Laureate Waller to His Majesty's tears ! 

" "When no healing art prevail'd, 
When cordials and elixirs fail'd, 
On your pale cheeks he dropt the shower 
Reviv'd you like a dying flower." 

A pathetic part of the Queen's illness was that in her 
delirium she raved about having given birth to an 
heir to the throne, whom the King was fain to humour 
her by declaring a very pretty boy. Another day she 
fancied that she had three children, of whom the girl 
was very like the King, and woke from sleep asking, 
" How do the children ? " Some at least of the 
tragedy of Catherine's life might have been removed 
had her dream about a son been true. But the King, 
though destined to have several more sons by other 
women, was never to have a child from her. 

With the Queen restored to health, the old situa- 
tion continues, the King being, as it were, in the midst 

^ It is not until November lOth, however, that she is quite well 
again and "hath bespoke herself a new gowne," 



THE RIVALS 107 

of a triangle of which the angles are the Queen, the 
Countess of Castlemaine, and Frances Stewart ; his 
wife, his mistress, and the lady who cannot be one 
and will not be the other. During the worst crisis of 
Catherine's illness it was believed by many that, if 
she died, the little maid of honour would become 
her lawful successor. And actually we hear of a 
" committee," as Lord Sandwich calls it to Pepys, of 
Edward Montagu, Sandwich's cousin (afterwards 
second Earl of Manchester), Sir H. Bennett, and the 
Duke and Duchess of Buckingham, with " somebody 
else," whose name is not divulged, " for the getting of 
Mrs. Stewart for the King." But Frances, advised by 
the Queen-Dowager Henrietta Maria and by her own 
mother, proves a cunning slut, and the precious plot is 
spoiled. Montagu and the Duke quarrel, and the 
former makes up to his kinsman Sandwich, who is a 
friend of Lady Castlemaine. 

Dr. Pierce adds his contribution to the gossip, telling 
" how the King is now become besotted upon A4rs. 
Stewart, that he gets into corners, and will be with 
her half an houre together kissing her to the observa- 
tion of all the world." As for my Lady Castlemaine, 
" the King is still kind, so as now and then he goes to 
have a chat with her, but with no such fondness as he 
used to do." 

In this curious and disgraceful situation it may be 
safely asserted that no one had more reason to be glad 
of the Queen's recovery than the royal mistress. Had 
Catherine died and Charles taken Frances Stewart 
as his second wife. Lady Castlemaine could not have 



io8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

continued to rule the King as she had done from 
1661. La belle Stuart was no Catherine of Braganza, 
as is clear from her diplomatic management of her 
importunate royal lover, and from her holding of 
her own in this dissolute Court at the age of only 
sixteen years. 

But if the Countess had grounds for gratitude to 
the Queen for continuing to live, there is no sign of 
any better relations being established between them 
than what may be called the armed neutrality estab- 
lished after the return from Hampton Court in 1662. 
The next step taken by Lady Castlemaine, though it 
brought her in a sense nearer to the Queen, scarcely 
commended itself to the latter, who could not believe 
that it v/as prompted by conscience. My Lady became 
a Roman Catholic. Cominges writes to Hugues de 
Lionne : " The Chevalier de Gramont's marriage ^ 
and Madame de Castlemaine's conversion were made 
public the same day. The King of England, having 
been begged by the lady's relatives to interfere to 
prevent this step, gallantly replied that, as for the 
soul of the ladies, he never meddled with that." 

There is nothing which gives us any clue to the 
immediate reason of Barbara's conversion to Roman 
Catholicism at this present moment. In spite of 
Catherine's suspicion, it is difficult to discover any 
interested motive for Lady Castlemaine's change of 
faith — unless we accept the explanation given in the 

^ To the celebrated beauty Elizabeth Hamilton, sister of Antony 
Hamilton, Gramont's later biographer ; of James, reputed lover of 
Lady Castlemaine — among others; and of four more brothers besides. 




BARBARA VILLIERS, COUNTESS OF CASTLEMAINE 
AND DUCHESS OF CLEVELAND 



THE RIVALS 109 

scurrilous Secret History of the Reigns of King Charles 
II and King James 11^ that she knew that the King 
was covertly a Papist and " had been often heard to 
say that she did not embrace the Catholic religion out 
of any esteem that she had for it, but because that 
otherwise she could not continue the King's mistress : 
and consequently Miss of State." ^ 

In the popular estimation, never favourably inclined 
toward her, Lady Castlemaine undoubtedly did her- 
self enormous injury by her change, as was to be shown 
in the future. The Church of England, however, 
could hardly be expected to express much regret at 
the defection of such a daughter. When told of 
it by William Penn the Quaker, Edward Stillingfleet 
(preacher at the Rolls Chapel and afterwards Dean of 
St. Paul's and Bishop of Norwich) remarked that, if 
the Church of Rome had got no more by it than the 
Church of England had lost, then the matter would 
not be much ! 

A few months after her conversion Lady Castle- 
maine is seen attending service at the chapel attached 
to the French Embassy in the Strand. It is Holy Week 
and, Cominges writes to Lionne, " the King has done 
me the honour to lend me his French musicians, thanks 
to whom a number of people in society come to my 
chapel, Madame de Castlemaine especially, whom I 
mean to regale as well as I can." 

^ Miss Strickland suggests that Lady Castlemaine "was cunningly 
preparing, in case of being abandoned by her royal lover, to pave the 
way for a reconciliation with her injured husband by embracing his 
religion." This does not seem a likely explanation. 



no MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

At the beginning of 1664 we continue to hear 
regularly of Charles's infatuation with Frances Stewart 
and his comparative disregard for his mistress. Dr. 
Pierce walks an hour with Pepys in the Matted Gallery 
at Whitehall on January 20th, and tells him, among 
other things, " that my Lady Castlemaine is not at 
all set by by the King, but that he do doat upon Mrs. 
Stewart only ; and that to the leaving of all business 
in the world, and to the open slighting of the Queene ; 
that he values not who sees him or stands by him while 
he dallies with her openly ; and then privately in her 
chamber below, where the very sentrys observe his 
going in and out ; and that so commonly that the 
Duke or any of the nobles, when they would ask where 
the King is, they will ordinarily say, ' Is the King above 
or below ? ' meaning with Mrs. Stewart : that the 
King do not openly disown my Lady Castlemaine, but 
that she comes to Court." And, according to Pierce, 
Lady Castlemaine consoles herself with Lord Fitz- 
harding, the Hamiltons, and Lord Sandwich. About 
a fortnight later the same informant has more to tell 
on the same theme of Charles and the maid of honour, 
and how some of the best parts of the Queen's join- 
ture are " bestowed or rented to my Lord Fitzharding 
and Mrs. Stewart and others of that crew." In spite 
of which, Mr. Pepys soon after finds " Mrs. Stewart 
grown fatter and not so fair as she was " ! 

My Lady Castlemaine, however, was not one to be 
easily slighted. The Diary records a curious scene 
at the theatre in Whitehall, where The Indian Queen^ 
by Dryden and Sir Robert Howard, is being played. 



THE RIVALS in 

Lady Castlemaine Is in her box, next to the royal 
box, before Charles comes. On his arrival, " leaning 
over other ladies awhile to whisper to the King, she 
rose out o£ the box and went into the King's, and set 
herself on the King's right hand, between the King 
and the Duke of York ; which he [Dr. Pierce] swears, 
put the King himself, as well as every body else, out of 
countenance ; and believes that she did it only to 
show the world that she is not out of favour yet, as was 
believed." 

A month later Sir Robert Paston, subsequently Earl 
of Yarmouth, writing to his wife to describe the scene 
at the prorogation of Parliament on March 2nd and 
Charles's departure from the House of Lords, says : 
" The press drive me up to the King's very elbow, and 
I had like to have carried my Lady Castlemaine along 
in the crowd, who was pleased very civilly to take 
notice of me." It is clear that the lady was not 
suffering her King to deprive her of the pleasure 
of close association with him in public. 

Further, she is able to keep a hold upon him through 
his tenderness of heart, for he goes at midnight 
to her nurses and takes her child up and dances it in 
his arms — the child being the five-months-old Henry, 
whom he thus treats kindly, in spite of not yet ac- 
cepting him as his own offspring. 

About this time Lady Castlemaine is supposed to 
have moved into new lodgings at Whitehall Palace. 
On January 25th there had been a fire in her apart- 
ments, when she bid " ^40 for one to adventure the 
fetching of a cabinet out, which at last was got to be 



112 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

done." The fire was put out without much damage 
to property, but its occurrence may have been made 
a reason for a move. At any rate, we learn that on 
May 29th, the King's birthday, Charles was " at my 
Lady Castlemaine's lodgings (over the hither-gate at 
Lambert's lodgings) dancing with fiddlers all night 
almost, and all the world coming by taking notice of 
it," which Pepys is sorry to hear. 

As she is not before this stated to have resided " over 
the hither-gate " of Whitehall, and as " Countess of 
Castlemaine's kitchen " is placed in an old survey of 
the Palace in the Cockpit buildings, on the West side 
of the street running from that gate to the King 
Street gate of the Palace, it is thought that in the 
early part of this year she exchanged her former rooms 
for some rather nearer to the royal apartments. The 
evidence is not quite conclusive, but on the other 
hand there is a fairly good case for a change of abode. 
The new lodgings (if they were new) were in the gate- 
house built across Whitehall after Holbein's design in 
the reign of Henry VHI and not pulled down until 
1759. This gatehouse was used by King Henry as a 
study. During the Commonwealth it was inhabited 
by Lambert, and now it was given up to a royal 
mistress, so that it had a varied history. 

For some time after this supposed change of abode 
we hear very little of Lady Castlemaine. She appears 
at the lottery organised by Sir Arthur Slingsby in the 
Banqueting Hall (which was very close to the Holbein 
Gate) ; for Pepys, who manages as usual to get in here 
and place himself in the midst of all that is worth 



THE RIVALS 113 

seeing, stands " just behind my Lady Castlemaine, 
whom I do heartily adore." We do not hear what 
luck the lady had at the lottery, which Evelyn, who 
was also present, says " was thought to be contrived 
very unhandsomely by the master of it, who was, in 
truth, a meer shark." 

There was a very good cause for the lady not 
being much seen in public about this period. On 
September 5th, 1664, there was born at White- 
hall Palace, Charlotte Fitzroy, second daughter of 
Lady Castlemaine. So secretly did the birth take place 
that Pepys's Diary shows no knowledge of the child's 
existence at any date ; while Pepys's friend Pierce, the 
doctor, surmiises less than four weeks before the event 
something entirely incorrect about the condition of 
affairs, and again, on November nth, Pepys unsus- 
pectingly writes : " My wife tells me the sad news of 
my Lady Castlemaine's being now become so decayed 
that no one would know her ; at least, far from a 
beauty, which I am sorry for." 

Charles had, no doubt, the best of reasons for keeping 
Charlotte's appearance in the world from common 
knowledge as long as possible, for there was no chance 
of attributing the child to the lady's husband when 
he had been so long away from England. The King 
does not seem to have made any attempt to disown the 
fathership, in spite of the current scandal at Court 
earlier in the year, and a very affectionate letter to 
" my deare Charlotte " from " your kinde father," 
when she was of an age to appreciate a present of five 
hundred guineas, remains in existence to-day. 



114 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Only nine days after the birth of her child Lady 
Castlemaine entertains in her lodgings at Whitehall 
Madame de Cominges, the recently arrived wife of 
the French Ambassador. Cominges himself, seemingly 
without any suspicion of the lady's late experience, 
comments on the magnificence of the affair and tells 
how the King " did the honours of the house in a 
way befitting a host rather than a guest." 

If it is curious that such an inveterate gossip and so 
great an admirer of Barbara as Samuel Pepys should 
not have heard of Charlotte Fitzroy's birth, it is still 
more curious that he should also have failed to hear 
about a very unpleasant mishap to the royal mistress a 
month later. Perhaps it was because the diarist was 
unusually occupied with his own amours at this period 
that he had little time to glean from his general infor- 
mants the latest scandals in high society. It is from a 
letter of the French Ambassador to Lionne that our 
knowledge of the affair is derived. Writing on October 
2nd, Cominges relates how two days previously Lady 
Castlemaine, returning home after an evening spent 
with the Duchess of York at St. James's Palace, and 
accompanied only by one lady and a little page, was 
met suddenly in the Park by three gentilshommes (so 
at least they seemed to be from their clothes), wearing 
masks, who addressed to her the strongest and harshest 
reprimand imaginable, going so far as to remind her 
that the mistress of Edward IV died on a dunghill, 
scorned and abandoned by all the world. " You may 
imagine," continues Cominges, '" whether the time 
seemed long to her. ... As soon as she was in her 



THE RIVALS 115 

room she fainted. The King was informed of it, and 
running to her assistance ordered all the gates to be 
closed and all persons found in the Park to be arrested. 
Seven or eight people who happened to be there were 
brought in, but not identified, and have spread the 
story. It was desired to hush the matter up, but I 
think that will be difficult." It was not so difficult, ap- 
parently, as Cominges thought. 

This was not the first time, as we know, that Lady 
Castlemaine had to endure the odious comparison of 
herself with Jane Shore ; nor was it to be the last. 
Doubtless the three masked gentlemen were people 
about the Court, enemies of the mistress, and aware 
of the recent birth which had been kept so carefully 
concealed from the general public. If courtiers, they 
would have chances of escape not possessed by other 
people. 



CHAPTER VI 
POLITICS AND PLAGUE 

'TpHE outbreak of the war between England and 

Holland toward the end of 1664, not officially 

declared but none the less real, is doubtless the reason 

why we hear less about the gaieties at Court than 

usual at this period. But it took more than foreign 

troubles to dissipate the frivolous atmosphere of 

Whitehall, so that there is no necessity to imagine a 

slackening of the furious pace of pleasure there. On 

Candlemas Day (February 2nd), 1665, "^'^ have a 

glimpse of the Court at its amusements. On that day 

a masque was got up to surprise the King. Evelyn was 

a spectator, but gives no details. Pepys, deriving his 

information from Lord Sandwich's niece, tells how 

" six women (my Lady Castlemaine and Duchess of 

Monmouth being two of them) and six men (the 

Duke of Monmouth and Lord Arran and Monsieur 

Blanfort being three of them) in vizards, but most 

rich and antique dresses, did dance admirably and 

most gloriously." The Gramofit Memoirs contain 

some entertaining but very ill-natured details about a 

masquerade organised by Queen Catherine, which has 

been identified with this Candlemas Day revel. There 

are several difficulties in the way of the identification, 

one of which is that Gramont describes a lady as 

116 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 117 

still Mademoiselle Hamilton when she had become 
his own wife more than a year before and had presented 
a son to him five months before the revel ! It is true 
that he was a singularly forgetful man where his wife 
was concerned, the tale being famous of his attempted 
departure from England after his engagement to her. 
Her brothers hastened after him to Dover and, catch- 
ing him, asked him : " Count, have you forgotten 
nothing in London ? " — " Pardon me," replied Gra- 
mont, " I have forgotten to marry your sister. Let us 
go back and finish that affair." So he returned, married 
Elizabeth Hamilton, and only changed his character 
so far as to become the most bare-faced liar in the 
world, according to his compatriot, King Louis's 
Ambassador at Whitehall. 

To enliven the masquerade got up by the Queen 
(whether it was that of February 1665 or not), Gra- 
mont makes Mademoiselle Hamilton " invent two or 
three little tricks for turning to ridicule the vain fools 
of the Court, there being two pre-eminently such ; 
one Lady Muskerry, wife of her cousin-german, and 
the other a maid of honour to the Duchess [of York], 
called Blague." Lady Muskerry, a rich heiress, but 
no beauty, with one leg shorter than the other, received 
a forged invitation from the Queen to come dressed 
" in the Babylonian fashion," and arrived at the en- 
trance to Whitehall " with at least sixty ells of gauze 
and silver tissue about her, not to mention a sort of 
pyramid upon her head, adorned with a hundred 
thousand baubles " — to the astonishment of all who 
caught sight of her and to the rage of her husband, who 



ii8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

packed her off home before she could display her glory 
in an assembly to which she had not really been in- 
vited. The trick played upon Miss Blague (sister of 
the lady of whom Evelyn gives so noble and touching 
a picture) was even more cruel, for it had its point in 
an unrequited affection, and made her ridiculous in 
the eyes of the man whom she desired to love her. 

These and similar tales, of which there are many, 
certainly give a vivid picture of the freedom allowed 
at the Court of him whom history calls the " Merry 
Monarch " ; in which freedom the ladies were not a 
whit behind the gentlemen. The Countess of Sandwich 
was not overstating the case when she talked to Pepys 
of the " mad freaks " of the maids of honour, when 
even the more innocent among them, like Elizabeth 
Hamilton and Frances Jennings (heroine of the orange- 
girl story told by both Pepys and Gramont), were 
guilty of such extraordinary escapades. Lady Sand- 
wich observed that few men would venture upon these 
damsels for wives, and repeated a prophecy of Lady 
Castlemaine's, that her daughter (the four-year-old 
Anne) would be the first maid at Court that would be 
married. But the former Barbara Villiers should surely 
not have been a harsh critic in matters of maidenly 
behaviour ! 

Early in 1665 the husband whom she had so much 
wronged appeared again in England, and was seen by 
Pepys at St. James's, where no doubt he was paying 
his respects to the Duke of York. He had spent a 
considerable portion of his time abroad in the com- 
pany of Andrew Cornaro, Admiral of the Venetian 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 119 

fleet carrying on war with Turkey in the Levant, 
his experiences being embodied by him in a letter 
which he wrote to the King from Venice and after- 
wards published. Returning home by way of France, 
he was preceded by a report that he was about to make 
friends with his lady again. But we hear from one 
of Cominges' letters to Lionne that he was much dis- 
turbed when he found, on his arrival at Court, that 
his wife was the mother of two more fine children 
since he had left her. It is perhaps not surprising, 
therefore, that a few days after his return he set out 
again with the Duke of York for the fleet to fight the 
Dutch, leaving his lady to go her own way. It was 
probably on the day before the husband's departure 
from London that Pepys caught one of his most curious 
glimpses of Lady Castlemaine, in Hyde Park. On 
Sunday, March 19th, he tells how he rode with Mr. 
Povy in his coach to the Park, " where many brave 
ladies ; among others, Castlemaine lay impudently 
upon her back in her coach asleep, with her mouth 
open." It was the first day this year of the " tour " 
or Ring, vvhere the fashionable people took the air. 
There was also to be seen on the same day Lady 
Carnegy, Barbara's old friend Lady Anne Hamilton, 
whose reputation was even worse than hers by now. 

A fortnight later Lady Castlemaine is seen with the 
King at the Duke's Theatre, witnessing Lord Orrery's 
new play Mustapha. Their presence is to Pepys " all 
the pleasure of the play " ; but he notices also, for 
the first time in his Diary, " pretty witty Nell," who 
is, of course, none other than the famous Nell Gwynn. 



120 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

But Lady Castlemaine did not devote herself en- 
tirely to pleasure at this time. She had long taken 
her share in the domestic politics of Charles II, and, 
as we have seen, had fostered the rise of Henry 
Bennet and Charles Berkeley in the counsels of the 
King, to the discomfiture of " the old serious lords, "^ 
such as Clarendon and Southampton, whom she hated 
for refusing to seek her favour. Since she had become 
a Roman Catholic, her apartments in Whitehall had 
more than ever been the meeting-place of the faction 
hostile to the Chancellor and Treasurer, and the resort 
particularly of Bennet, now Earl of Arlington, and 
his co-religionists. Foreign affairs played their part 
in creating a wider divergence between the rival 
parties. The outbreak of the quarrel with Holland, 
very unwelcome to the Chancellor and his friends, was 
popular with the Roman Catholic section of the Court ; 
and the Duke of York, though he showed no signs yet 
of any leaning toward Rome, was also a strong advocate 
of the war. 

There was, indeed, no distinct division on religious 
grounds in this matter of a war with Holland. 
At this period a bitterly anti-Dutch feeling pre- 
vailed in England generally, due to the commercial 
and colonial rivalry of the two leading naval Powers 
of the world. On the other hand, it did not at all suit 
the policy of Louis XIV of France that one of these 
two nations should crush the other and become supreme. 
Louis was tied by treaty to the Dutch at present, and 

^ Otherwise " those old dotards," as Charles's other counsellors 
called them, according to Lord Sandwich. 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 121 

at the same time was anxious to enter into closer 
relations with England. He was, therefore, bent on 
mediating, if possible, between the two countries, and 
to this end made extraordinary diplomatic efforts, 
which the friends of France at the English Court, in- 
cluding the adherents of the Queen-Mother Henrietta 
Maria, seconded to the best of their ability. Among 
the French party was Frances Stewart, whose 
mother was attached to Henrietta Maria. Accord- 
ingly we find now the royal favourite and the 
titular mistress of the King no unimportant figures in 
the struggle for the direction of England's foreign 
policy. 

Louis, seeing that Cominges alone was unable to 
influence Charles in the direction he desired, sent 
over to help him the extraordinary mission which is 
known as la celehre Anibassade, including a prince of 
the blood, the Due de Verneuil. On their arrival 
the envoys found the chief obstacle in the way of 
carrying out their instructions to prevent an ofiicial 
declaration of war between the English and Dutch 
was the alliance between Lady Castlemaine and the 
Spanish Ambassador, the Count de Molina. Spain, 
the great military rival of France in Europe, was 
naturally concerned to prevent any attempt at closer 
Anglo-French relations. The Vatican was still domin- 
ated by her, and, in spite of Charles's Portuguese 
marriage, which seemed to commit him to hostility 
against her, she had a strong hold on the sympathies 
of the English Roman Catholics. Nor was she any 
longer disliked by the English nation generally. Lady 



122 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Castlemaine, for once in a way, was ranged on the 
more popular side. 

The letters sent to Paris by the representatives of 
France this summer bring out the attitude of the 
mistress about the political situation. The Ambas- 
sadors are soon compelled to recognise the difficulty 
of their task. They believe that the English King 
wants peace, but he tells them that his people are en- 
raged against the Dutch and that he cannot recall 
his fleet. On June ist Verneuil and his associates write 
reporting a bitter speech against the French made at 
Lady Castlemaine's by Lauderdale, who ruled the 
King as far as Scottish affairs were concerned and was 
growing more powerful in English affairs also. His 
words are quickly on every one's lips and are repeated 
on the Exchange every morning. Was the King at 
Lady Castlemaine^s to hear Lauderdale's speech ? We 
are not told, but a day later Pepys, going to Court on 
a matter of business, is " led up to my Lady Castle- 
maine's lodgings, where the King and she and others 
were at supper," so that we may presume His Majesty 
was still constant at his suppers with the mistress. 

On the day after this visit of Pepys to Lady Castle- 
maine's apartments was fought the great naval battle 
in Southwold Bay, when the English fleet under the 
Duke of York gained a handsome victory over Opdam 
and the other Dutch admirals. The chief loss on 
the English side was Charles Berkeley (or, as he had 
now lately become, Lord Falmouth), who with Lord 
Muskerry and another was kiUed on board the flagship, 
so close to the Duke that he was splashed with their 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 123 

blood and brains. The public rejoicings over the 
fleet's success were enthusiastic, followed by demon- 
strations against the French Embassy, which refrained 
from joining in the display of bonfires at all the street 
doors. 

While this naval battle was taking place Queen 
Catherine was at Tunbridge Wells once more, drinking 
the waters, and the Court ladies attended upon her in 
their turns. " The ladies here," writes Henry Savile 
from London to his sister-in-law, " begin to go down 
to pay their duty to Her Majesty. My Lady Denham 
goes this night, my Lady Castlemaine and Lady Fal- 
mouth go next week." Savile does not anticipate 
much enjoyment for them, since he declares : " That 
Tunbridge is the most miserable place in the world 
is very certain, and that the ladys do not look with 
very great advantage at three of the clock in the 
morning is as true ! " Late hours were evidently the 
rule, w^hatever the ladies found to amuse them. 

After her return from the Wells, Lady Castlemaine 
is next heard of at a great feast given by the Spanish 
Ambassador to her and his other friends. The pro- 
Spanish party was naturally jubilant at the result of 
Southwold Bay, and Molina was on the best of terms 
with all the world. In honour of the occasion, his 
hospitality was so lavish that even his servants, enter- 
taining the coachmen and lacqueys of his visitors, 
made them all drunk, and when my Lady and the 
other guests were ready to depart they found it im- 
possible to trust themselves to be driven by men in 
such a state. Molina offered the services of his own 



124 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

staff, whereon the EngHsh servants in their indigna- 
tion rose up and fought them — which a French Em- 
bassy official finds " the greatest and pleasantest dis- 
order possible." 

But the French refuse to lose heart. Mademoiselle 
Stewart, " incomparably more beautiful " than Lady 
Castlemaine, according to one of them, is very friendly 
to them, and they think they see hopeful signs of a 
decrease of the Castlemaine influence. On July i6th 
Courtin, one of the Ambassadors, reports with satis- 
faction to Lionne that the mistress " has refused to 
sleep at Hampton Court, saying that her apartment 
is not yet ready." Meanwhile, " His Britannic 
Majesty supped yesterday with Mile. Stewart, at Lord 
Arlington's " ; Lady Castlemaine " runs great risks, 
and if her anger lasts may well lose the finest rose on 
her hat." 

The move to Hampton Court, to which Courtin 
refers, was occasioned by fear of the terrible visitor 
which had reached London in the summer of 1665. 
During the week ending June 27th the deaths from 
plague in town had numbered 267. The Court pre- 
pared to fly, and on the 29th Pepys saw at Whitehall 
the waggons and people ready to go. What Lady 
Castlemaine did when she refused to sleep at Hampton 
Court we do not know. It is hardly likely that she 
continued at Whitehall when all around the infection 
was spreading. Possibly she v/ent for a time to Rich- 
mond Palace, as we have seen her go before ; if so, 
probably her retirement thither was as brief as on 
the previous occasions. 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 125 

But soon the plague began to extend its ravages ; 
the London death-rate increased enormously, and a 
soldier on duty at Hampton Court itself was seized. 
So before the end of July a move further out of the 
danger-zone was decided on, and on the 27th the 
Court set out for Salisbury. Pepys, a visitor to 
Hampton Court that day, watches the King and 
Queen depart and finds it " pretty to see the young 
pretty ladies dressed like men, in velvet coats, caps 
with ribbands, and with laced bands, just like men." 
No ladies' names are mentioned, but both Lady Castle- 
maine and Frances Stewart were among those who 
accompanied Their Majesties and may have been 
among the wearers of the man-like dress, with regard 
to which an Oxford letter some two months later is of 
interest. " One cannot possibly know a woman from 
a man," writes Denis de Repas to Sir Robert Harley, 
" unlesse one hath the eyes of a linx who can see 
through a wall, for by the face and garbe they are like 
men. They do not wear any hood, but only men's 
perwick hats and coats." 

The plague was not slow in following the fugitives 
to Salisbury, and in August there were deaths in the 
street — " an unpleasant habit which begins to spread 
here," writes Courtin — and closings of infected houses. 
It seemed necessary to make another move. More- 
over, time doubtless hung rather heavily on King and 
courtiers alike at Salisbury, while there was the 
assembly of Parliament to take place in October, the 
appointed place for which was Oxford. 

So on September 25th King Charles reached Oxford 



126 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

and took up his residence as before in the lodgings 
of the Dean of Christ Church. The Dukes of York 
and Monmouth arrived the same day, the Queen the 
next. Lady Castlemaine possibly travelled with Her 
Majesty in her capacity of Lady of the Bedchamber ; 
but her two little sons came on the 25th and were 
lodged at the house of the Wood family, opposite 
Merton College Gate, as Antony Wood records.^ 
The Queen and her ladies were assigned rooms in 
Merton, the Queen having those in the Warden's 
House which Henrietta Maria had occupied in the 
troublous times of the Civil War, and Lady Castle- 
maine, Frances Stewart, and others having rooms be- 
longing to various Fellows and Postmasters of Merton, 
who were turned out of college to make room for 
them. The rest of the Court and the Diplomatic 
Body were distributed about the University, the Duke 
and Duchess of York being at Christ Church, the Duke 
and Duchess of Monmouth at Corpus, the French 
Ambassadors at Magdalen, the Spanish at New College, 
and so on. 

The task of housing all these people at Oxford was 
a difficult one, and it is evident that the Chancellor 
of the University by no means relished it. He tells, 
in the Continuation of his life, how there was some 
unpleasantness with the Lord High Treasurer South- 
ampton about it. Attempts had recently been made 
to sow the seeds of ill-will between them, and South- 

1 "Sept. 25, M., the lady of Castlemaine's two children began to 
lay at our house." Wood apparently did not feel honoured by his 
home sheltering the future Dukes of Southampton and Grafton. 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 127 

ampton was feeling some jealousy of his old friend. 
'' Which," says Clarendon, " was improved by the 
ladies, who did not like their lodging, and thought it 
proceeded from w^int of friendship in him [the 
Chancellor], who had the power over the University, 
and might have assigned what lodgings he pleased to 
the Treasurer ; and he had assigned this, as the best 
house in the town for so great a family." 

As for the University, it certainly seems to have 
felt but little pleasure at the prolonged visit of the 
Court in its midst. The presence of more ladies than 
scholars in chapel, which the Merton College Register 
notes, did not compensate for the turning out of their 
rooms of fellows and undergraduates and the conse- 
quent upset of scholarly peace. ^ Then there was the 
dread, fortunately unrealised, of the great epidemic 
reaching the town in the train of the Court. " It 
was noe better," declares Wood, " than tempting God 
to bring upon us the sad judgment of the plague." 
However, Denis de Repas in the above quoted letter 
quaintly remarks : " There is no othere plague here 
but the infection of love." 

Wood's opinion of the intruders themselves is the 
reverse of flattering. He sums them up thus : 

" The greater sort of the courtiers were high, proud, 
insolent, and looked upon scolars noe more than pedants, 
or pedagogicall persons ; the lower sort also made noe 
more of them then the greater, not suffering them to 

1 One Fellow of Merton sent Antony Wood sixty-nine folios to 
look after for him until the King and Queen should have left Oxford. 
He was no doubt wise. 



T28 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

see the King or Queen at dinner or supper or scarce 
at cards or at masse, never regarding that they had 
parted with their chambers and conveniences. . . . To 
give a further character of the Court, they, though 
they were neat and gay in their apparell, yet they were 
very nasty and beastly. . . ." 

PoHteness forbids us continuing the quotation ; but 
Woods finds the courtiers rude, rough, immoral, vain, 
empty, and careless. He had certainly some justifica- 
tion for his censure, particularly as at Merton " the 
Masters " had to complain of discourtesy shown to 
them by a royal servant on the very day after the 
Queen's arrival. 

Nevertheless, the welcome given to the visitors was 
very loyal. At Merton itself, when the Queen was 
escorted to her lodgings by the King and the Duke of 
York, the College authorities met them and one of 
the Fellows recited sixteen lines of verse, of which two 
asserted that : 

*' Our pious founder, knew he this daye's state, 
Would quitt his mansion to congratulate." 

Walter de Merton was happily beyond reach of 
questions as to what he might think about the matter. 

About Lady Castlemaine during this, her second 
visit to Oxford, we hear but little before an oc- 
currence soon to be mentioned. Her state of health 
now did not allow her to appear much in public. And, 
unfortunately, one supposed reference to her pro- 
menading in the Lime Walk of Trinity College with a 
lute playing before her, and attending the chapel 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 129 

there " like an angel but half-dressed," turns out to 
be an error, the lady alluded to being really Lady- 
Isabella Thynne, in the reign of Charles I.^ 

But if Lady Castlemaine was debarred from showing 
herself much abroad, she had the satisfaction of seeing 
her influence with the King prevailing still and his 
foreign policy shaped according to her desire. At the 
end of November, the French Ambassadors quitted 
Oxford, leaving with the President of Magdalen a 
piece of plate worth four pounds as a memorial of 
their visit. La ceVebre Ambassade had failed. England 
was still in a fighting mood, as was shown by the early 
speeches of the Parliament which began its sittings 
in the schools at Oxford on October 9th ; and Louis, 
unable to stop the war and pledged by treaty to aid 

^ As a Trinity man I am sorry to spoil (if, indeed, I am the first to 
do so, which I do not know) the pleasant legend connecting Lady 
Castlemaine with my own college. But John Aubrey in his Lives 
of Eminent Men, writing of Ralph Kettle, d.d., tells how a certain Lady 
Isabella Thynne used to visit Trinity Lime Walk during the time when 
Oxford was the Royalist head-quarters. " Our grove," he says, " was 
the Daphne for the ladies and their gallants to walke in, and many 
times my Lady Isabella Thynne would make her entreys with a 
theorbo or lute played before her. I have heard her play on it in the 
grove myselfe, which she did rarely. . . . One may say of her as 
Tacitus said of Agrippina, Cuncta alia illi adfuere praeter animum 
honestum. She was most beautifull, most humble, charitable, &c., but 
she could not subdue one thing." Aubrey adds that this lady and 
"fine Mrs. Fenshawe, her great and intimate friend," were wont "to 
come to our Chapell, mornings, halfe dressed like angells." The late 
Mark Pattison, then Rector of Lincoln, writing in MacmtUan's Magazine 
for July 1875, and trusting to his memory, made Lady Castlemaine the 
heroine of the tale. And Steinman {Memoir of Barbara, Duchess 
of Cleveland, Second Addenda, 1878, p. 4), by accepting the unidentified 
reference, perpetuated the error. 

K 



130 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

the Dutch, had to renounce for the present his scheme 
for closer union with England. There was nothing 
for it but an open rupture between England and 
France. The Castlemaine-Molina alliance had won 
the day, and " Mrs. Stewart " had proved a broken 
reed, as far as her political influence over the King 
was concerned. No doubt the representatives of 
France had over-estimated her desire to take a hand 
in the game. Clarendon, who has a high opinion of 
Frances Stewart, states that she " never seemed dis- 
posed to interpose in the least degree in business " ; 
" which kind of nature and temper," he adds, " the 
more inflamed the King's affection, who did not in his 
nature love a busy woman, and had an aversion from 
speaking with any woman, or hearing them speak, of 
any business but to that purpose he thought them 
all made for, however they broke in afterwards upon 
him to all other purposes." 

About a month after the discomfiture of the French 
Ambassadors, in which she had played her part. Lady 
Castlemaine was delivered of her third son and fifth 
child. On December 28th, 1665, was born George, 
one day to be Duke of Northumberland. Antony 
Wood made the official entry in the register of the 
parish of St. John Baptist, Oxford, which reads as 
follows : 



" 1665, Dec. 28, George Palmer, sonne of Roger, 
earl of Castlemaine, was born in Merton College ; and 
was baptized there the first of January following. His 
mother's name was Barbara, daughter of Villiers, 



POLITICS AND PLAGUE 131 

since dutchesse of Cleveland. Films natiiralis regis 
Caroli 11.^^ 

In his private copy of the register he speaks of 
" George Palmer, base son of King Charles II." And 
there was never any doubt as to the fatherhood of the 
child, in the King's mind or that of any one else. 
That Oxford was scandalised may be gathered from 
Wood's mention of a " libell on the countess of 
Castlemayne's dore in Merton College " one day in 
January. He gives the libel, which was in both Latin 
and English, but the sample of scholastic scorn cannot 
be quoted here. It must suffice to say that it suggested 
that, but for the King being the father, the mother 
would have been ducked — which seems to have been 
the contemporary Oxford method of dealing with 
undesirable ladies. A thousand pounds was offered 
as a reward for the discovery of the libel's author, 
without effect. But Lady Castlemaine was not 
ashamed, and we shall see her one day claiming 
proudly that this son of hers was born among the 
scholars ! 



CHAPTER VII 
THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 

'' I ""HE plague in London having decreased very 
markedly, and war with France having been 
declared, Charles II left Oxford on January 27th, 1666, 
eighteen days after Pierce, lately come from there, 
had told Pepys that " all the town, and every boy 
in the streete, openly cries, ' The King cannot go away 
till my Lady Castlemaine be ready to come along with 
him.' " Whether the lady left with him we do not 
hear. The Queen was not able to move until February 
1 6th, having been so unfortunate as to disappoint the 
hopes of the King which had been fulfilled in the 
case of Lady Castlemaine. This accident is said to 
have had a lasting effect on her husband's mind. 
Clarendon says that " some of the women who had 
more credit with the King " assured him that there 
had never really been any foundation for the Queen's 
expectation,^ of which he suffered himself to be con- 
vinced ; and that " from that time he took little 
pleasure in her conversation, and more indulged 
to himself all the liberties in the conversation of 
those who used their skill to supply him with divertise- 
ments which might drive all that was serious out of 

^ As a matter of fact, hopes were aroused again in 1668 and 1669, 
but were again disappointed. 

132 




From a pliotograf'h by IV. A. Mnnsell &^ Co., nftef a painting- I'y 
Mrs. Beale in the National Portrait Callery 



CHARLES THE SECOND 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 133 

his thoughts." During his abode at Oxford, though 
he had been regular in his morning calls upon both 
Lady Castlemaine and Frances Stewart, he had been 
observed to live with more constraint and caution. 
Now he relaxed the effort to be an attentive husband, 
and, but for Clarendon's own continued presence at 
the head of affairs, it seems possible that in the bitterness 
of his disappointment Charles might have given his 
consideration at once to the scheme that was actually de- 
bated after the Chancellor's fall a year and a half later. 
The mistress was naturally triumphant over the 
turn which affairs had taken, and abused her influence 
over the King to the utmost, especially in the matter 
of replenishing her purse. " Her principal business," 
says Clarendon, " was to get an estate for herself and 
her children, which she thought the King at least 
as much concerned to provide as she to solicit ; 
which however she would not be wanting in, and 
so procured round sums of money out of the privy 
purse (where she had placed Mr. May) and other 
assignations in other names, and so the less taken 
notice of, though in great proportions : all which 
yet amounted to little more than to pay her debts, 
which she in a few years contracted to an unimagin- 
able greatness, and to defray her constant expenses, 
which were very excessive in coaches and horses, 
clothes and jewels, without anything of generosity, 
or gratifying any of her family, or so much as paying 
any of her father's debts,' whereof some were very 

^ She did, however, erect to his memory the marble tomb in Christ 
Church Cathedral. 



134 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

clamorous." He goes on to say that she procured 
for herself grants of land in Ireland, because these 
did not have to come before the Chancellor and 
Treasurer of England, who were thus powerless to 
obstruct the grants and did not even know about 
them. 

We shall hear more later about these grants in 
Ireland, and considerably more about the money 
lavished by the King upon her whom Burnet so 
justifiably calls " enormously vicious and ravenous." 
For the present, it may be noticed that she had hardly 
returned to London from Oxford when she bought 
from Edward Bakewell or Backwell, alderman, banker, 
and goldsmith, two diamond rings, valued at ;^iioo 
and ^900 respectively, but did not pay for them. 
The Domestic State Papers of Charles II show that 
this same year another jeweller, John Leroy, was 
petitioning the King for " payment of ;^357, balance 
of ^^850 due for a ring delivered to the Countess of 
Castlemaine, which she said was for His Majesty." 
Whether the other rings were for her own adornment 
or to give away does not appear. But she was very 
fond of personal jewelry. 

The conduct of the war simultaneously against 
Holland and France — it is true that the French 
demonstrations against England were very languid — 
had little effect on the amusements of the Court. 
Dining with Pierce and his family on Easter Day, 
Pepys hears all about " the amours and the mad 
doings that are there." Even after the murderous 
sea-fight with the Dutch, the Battle of the Downs, 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 135 

on the opening days of June, domestic affairs seem 
to occupy most attention at Whitehall. On June loth 
Pepys has another of his Sunday gossips with Pierce, 
and learns the details of a falling out between the 
King and Lady Castlemaine, of which we should 
otherwise have heard nothing. The Queen, says 
Pierce, " in ordinary talke before the ladies in her 
drawing-room, did say to my Lady Castlemaine 
that she feared the King did take cold by staying 
abroad so late at her house. She answered before 
them all, that he did not stay so late abroad with 
her, for he went betimes thence (though he did not 
before one, two, or three in the morning), but must 
stay somewhere else. The King then coming in 
and overhearing did whisper in the eare aside, and 
told her she was a bold impertinent woman, and bid 
her begone out of the Court, and not come again 
till he sent for her ; which she did presently, and went 
to a lodging in the Pell Mell, and kept there two or 
three days, and then sent to the King to know whether 
she might send for her things away out of her house. 
The King sent to her, she must first come and view 
them ; and so she came, and the King went to her, 
and all friends again." 

While her anger lasted, however. Lady Castlemaine 
went so far as to threaten " to be even with the King 
and print his letters to her." Charles could scarcely 
afford to anticipate the terse answer of the Duke of 
Wellington to a similar threat and tell the lady to 
" publish and be damned," for Lady Castlemaine 
would probably have taken him at his word. So he 



136 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

was doubtless wise, if not dignified, in the course 
which he adopted. 

A very odd petition among the Domestic State 
Papers of 1666 shows how much the conduct 
of the King with his mistress aroused pubhc concern 
at this time. The document is three pages long, and 
concludes by stating that the petitioner " is but a 
woman and can only pray for His Majesty." The 
most interesting statement made in it is that " people 
say, ' Give the King the Countess of Castlemaine, 
and he cares not what the nation suffers.' " With 
what feelings, we may wonder, did Charles read this, 
if it ever came before his eyes ? 

Some casual notices of Lady Castlemaine and 
Frances Stewart in the following months do not 
convey much information. But one entry in Pepys's 
Diary is worth quotation on account of its unusually 
critical tone. He went to Whitehall on the evening 
of October 3rd. " And there among the ladies, 
and saw my lady Castlemaine never looked so ill, 
nor Mrs. Stewart neither, as in this plain, natural 
dress. I was not pleased with either of them." " Plain, 
natural dress," was seldom worn by the Caroline 
ladies, and doubtless looked strange upon them. 

On October 21st we hear from the same source 
of a matter of more interest. Attached to the Bed- 
chamber of the Duke of York was a young man called 
Harry Killigrew — the same whom Henry Savile, 
brother of the future Marquis of Halifax, addresses 
in a letter as " Noble Henry, sweet namesake of mine, 
happy-humoured Killigrew, soul of mirth and all 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 137 

delight ! " while Charles II, in a letter to his sister in 
1668, calls him " a most notorious lyar." Like his 
father, " Tom " Killigrew, who held the curiously 
named post of Master of the Revels to Charles II 
and actually had a fool's dress in his wardrobe, Harry- 
aspired to all the verbal licence of a recognised wit.^ 
On this occasion he ventured to comment, in language 
more caustic than humorous, on Lady Castlemaine's 
conduct in girlhood. The truth was not palatable 
to the lady, who complained to the King. Charles 
asked his brother to dismiss his gentleman, which 
the Duke did. But James was offended that Lady 
Castlemaine had not come to him first, instead of 
going to the King ; and so, in spite of an effort by 
the lady, calling in person, to conciliate the Duke, 
" ill blood is made of it." Killigrew was forgiven 
after a time, for in 1669 he was Groom of the Bed- 
chamber to Charles himself. Nine years later he 
offended another mistress in a drunken freak, calling 
at Nell Gwynn's early one morning to tell her, 
ostensibly from the King, that her hated rival, 
the Duchess of Portsmouth, had recovered from an 
illness that was expected to kill her. He was banished 
again, but nevertheless succeeded his father as 
Master of the Revels. 

It was naturally annoying to the former Barbara 
VilHers to be put in mind of her first period. The last 

^ Thomas KlUigrew's best effort was when he appeared before 
Charles dressed and booted as if for a journey. Asked by the King 
where he was going in such a hurry, he replied : " To Hell, to fetch 
up Oliver Cromwell to look after the affairs of England, for his 
successor never will ! " 



138 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

reminders, except for the name which accompanied 
it, of the second period were effaced this same year. 
Lord Castlemaine had been in England at the be- 
ginning of 1666, for in May he received the King's 
leave to go abroad again. He did not depart at once, 
or else he paid another brief visit to England ; for 
on December 12th Pepys hears from Sir H. Cholmly 
how Lady Castlemaine and her husband are now 
" parted for ever, upon good terms, never to trouble 
one another more." 

The Great Fire which made this year so memorable 
for London, as it was prevented from reaching 
Whitehall, did not affect Lady Castlemaine personally ; 
save in so far as it gave an impetus to the bitter and 
unjust anti-Papist agitation which involved her later, 
and (we may perhaps add) because it induced John 
Leroy, jeweller, to send in a more pressing request 
for the balance of the money due to him on the ring 
purchased for His Majesty. But she doubtless 
watched the progress of the conflagration, while 
Charles, to his credit — unlike the legendary fiddling 
Nero — took an active part in the devising of schemes 
to fight the fire, and, as Evelyn relates, with the Duke 
of York " even laboured in person and was present 
to command, order, reward, and encourage workmen, 
by which he showed his affection to his people and 
gained theirs." The same loyal observer, it must be 
noticed, speaking of the general fast ordered through- 
out the nation on October loth, says that the " dismal 
judgments " of fire, plague, and war were highly 
deserved for " our prodigious ingratitude, burning 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 139 

lusts, dissolute Court, profane and abominable 
lives." 

It was not long before the dissolute Court which 
Evelyn laments resumed its gaiety and licence after 
the temporary quiet caused by the Fire. Evelyn's 
indignation against the Duke of York for the way 
in which he behaved with Lady Denham at Court 
toward the end of September is recorded by his 
friend Pepys ; and the graver of the two diarists 
himself has some scathing remarks on the theatre 
when, against his conscience at such a time, he attends 
a performance of Lord Broghill's Mustapha at White- 
hall. He sees the theatres " abused to an atheisticall 
liberty " and " fowle and undecent women now 
(and never till now) permitted to appeare and act, 
who inflaming severall young noblemen and gallants, 
became their misses, and to some their wives." He 
does not foresee, however, how much worse things 
are to become, and how the " misses " are soon to 
threaten the position of the very mistress en titre, the 
Countess of Castlemaine, and defeat her by virtue of 
being yet more brazen than she. 

Some more innocent revels at Court this autumn are 
described by Pepys on the occasion of the Queen's 
birthday, November 15th. The scene is so character- 
istic and interesting that no apology is needed for 
transcribing it : 

" I also to the ball, and with much ado got up to 
the loft, where with much trouble I could see very 
well. Anon the house grew full, and the candles 
light, and the King and Queen and all the ladies 



140 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

set : and it was, indeed, a glorious sight to see Mrs. 
Stewart in black and white lace, and her head and 
shoulders dressed with dyamonds, and the like a 
great many great ladies more, only the Queen none ; 
and the King in his rich vest of some rich silke and 
silver trimmings, as the Duke of York and all the 
dancers were, some of cloth of silver, and others of 
other sorts, exceeding rich. Presently after the King 
was come in, he took the Queene, and about fourteen 
more couple there was, and begun the Bransles. . . . 
After the Bransles, then to a Corant, and now and 
then a French dance ; but that so rare that the 
Corants grew tiresome, that I wished it done. Only 
Mrs. Stewart danced mighty finely, and many French 
dances, specially one the King called the New Dance, 
which was very pretty ; but upon the whole matter, 
the business of the dancing of itself w-as not extra- 
ordinary pleasing. But the clothes and sight of the 
persons was indeed very pleasing, and worth my 
coming, being never likely to see more gallantry 
while I live, if I should come twenty times. . . . My 
Lady Castlemayne, without whom all is nothing, 
being there, very rich, though not dancing." 

There had been rumours of the lady's indisposition 
for some weeks before this, so that her not taking 
an active part in the ball seems to have occasioned no 
surprise. It is curious, however, that in a letter to 
Harley a month later, Denis de Repas should say : 
" Lady Castlemainc lives as retired as a nun. She has 
not been seen at ball or play since the fire." Although 
the eye-witness Pcpys must, of course, be correct, 
doubtless Lady Castlemaine may have lived in unusual 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREA4ACY 141 

retirement at this period. Still her hold over the 
King and her extortions from him continued un- 
diminished, of which a signal proof was given 
before the end of this year. According to what Sir 
H. Cholmly told Pepys on December i6th, Charles 
had lately paid about ^30,000 to clear her debts. 
On the following Sunday the diarist himself went to 
Whitehall, and " saw my dear Lady Castlemaine, 
who continues admirable, methinks, and I do not 
hear but that the King is the same to her still as 
ever." But, as usual, at the end of the year Pepys 
grows moral and shakes his head over the " sad, 
vicious, negligent Court." 

If 1666 closed with no alteration in the situation 
of affairs in Charles's heart, in the following spring 
the Court was suddenly struck as though a thunder- 
bolt had fallen in its midst. Frances Stewart at the 
end of March eloped with her cousin Charles, Duke 
of Richmond and Lennox, kinsman to his namesake 
the King as well as to herself. The Duke had lost 
his second wife at the beginning of the year, and a 
fortnight after she was buried proposed for the hand 
of Frances. On March 19th they were betrothed, 
report said, and the next thing to be heard was that 
the maid of honour had been fetched by a ruse to 
the Bear Tavern by Southwark Bridge, got into a 
coach with her cousin, and fled with him to Kent 
without the King's leave. 

Gramont, " the most bare-faced liar in the 
world," has a long story of the King's discovery 
of an intrigue between Frances and the Duke of 



142 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Richmond, led to it by Lady Castlemaine and the 
infamous William Chiffinch, keeper of Charles's 
backstairs, and dispenser of his most secret funds ; 
with circumstantial details of the resulting quarrel 
between the King and the maid. But the un- 
supported word of Gramont here is probably 
about as valuable as it is anywhere else. It is better 
to rely on what Burnet says about Charles's consent 
to the marriage, " pretending to take care of her, 
that he would have good settlements made for her," 
as " he hoped by that means to have broken the 
matter decently, for he knew the Duke of Richmond's 
affairs were in disorder." This at least is reconcilable 
with what Pepys hears from Sir William Penn and 
Evelyn, the latter of whom learns " from a Lord 
that she told it to but yesterday, with her own mouth, 
and a sober man, that when the Duke of Richmond 
did make love to her, she did ask the King, and he 
did the like also ; and that the King did not deny it." 

That Charles was nevertheless vexed at the sudden 
elopement is quite possible. He was trying to make 
the best of things and to take up a generous attitude, 
but the runaway marriage snatched the matter out 
of his hands, and he took what was a long time for 
him to choke down his feeling of resentment. Part 
of his anger against Clarendon was supposed to be 
due to his belief that the Chancellor was implicated 
in the Richmond match. 

One person who could not fail to be pleased at 
what had happened was the mistress. " Now the 
Countess Castlemaine do carry all before her," 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 143 

Evelyn told Pepys. Her rejoicing was premature, 
it is true ; but that was not to be manifested until 
some time had passed. For the present matters 
seemed to be going very well for her. The Richmond 
match removed her great rival of her own sex from 
her path. On May i6th death took away an object of 
her detestation in the Lord Treasurer Southampton — 
an event which Clarendon declares made a fatal 
breach in his own fortune, " with a gap wide enough 
to let in all the ruin which soon after was poured 
upon him." It is certain that the disappearance of 
one of the only two great ministers who refused to 
pay court to her made easier the gratification of 
the mistress's spite against the other, whom she hated 
still more. 

With " the prevalence of the lady," as Clarendon 
calls it, naturally increased by these two happenings 
of early 1667, frivolity reigned at Court unchecked 
by domestic sorrows or public calamities. On May 
23rd the infant Duke of Kendal, younger son of the 
Duke of York, died, while his elder brother, the 
Duke of Cambridge, was so ill that he was expected 
to go first, and, as a matter of fact, only survived him 
by a month. In the second week of June came the 
famous raid of the Dutch fleet up the Thames and 
Medway, the capture of the Duke's flagship. The 
Royal Charles, and the destruction of several other 
big warships, followed by a great panic and cries of 
England's betrayal by " the Papists and others about 
the King." Charles, going out one day to feed his 
ducks in St. James's Park and to stroll with Prince 



144 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Rupert, returned to find the whole of Whitehall 
in an uproar and the Countess of Castlemaine bewail- 
ing, above all others, that she should be the first 
torn to pieces. Yet " the Court is as mad as ever," 
says Sir H. Cholmly to Pepys ; " and that night the 
Dutch burnt our ships the King did sup with my 
Lady Castlemaine at the Duchess of Monmouth's, 
and they were all mad in hunting a poor moth " — 
a tale which makes a curious contrast with Pepys's 
own experience on the backstairs at Whitehall on 
June 13th, where he heard the lacqueys saying that 
there was " hardly anybody in the Court but do look 
as if he cried " ! 

Never, perhaps, was the inconsistent character 
of Charles II more clearly demonstrated than at 
this period of his life. A man so capable of rising 
to an occasion as he had proved himself to be had 
a glorious opportunity now of showing what lay 
beneath the surface. But all he could do apparently 
was to furnish his subjects with material for indignant 
reflection. The moth-hunting story is bad enough. 
What of this other, which Pepys got a few days after 
from Povy ? 

" He tells me, speaking of the horrid effeminacy 
of the King, that the King hath taken ten times 
more care and pains in making friends between my 
Lady Castlemaine and Mrs. Stewart, when they have 
fallen out, than ever he did to save his kingdom ; 
nay, that upon any falling out between my Lady 
Castlemaine's nurse and her woman, my Lady hath 
often said she would make the King to make them 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 145 

friends, and they would be friends and be quiet ; 
which the King hath been fain to do : that the King 
is, at this day, every night in Hyde Park with the 
Duchesse of Monmouth, or with my Lady Castle- 



maine." 



Truly Burnet's diagnosis of the case of Charles 
and Lady Castlemaine seems correct, that " his 
passion for her, and her strange behaviour toward 
him, did so disorder him that often he was not master 
of himself nor capable of minding business." ^ 

The most noticeable evil arising from this condition 
of the King was the enormous demands which he 
made upon the revenues of his country to satisfy 
his Privy Purse, which by the influence of his mistress 
had been entrusted to the hands of Baptist May, 
another gentleman of the same stamp as William 
Chiffinch. May had the effrontery to tell the dis- 
contented Members of Parliament that ;£300 a 
year was enough for any country gentleman — " which 
makes them mad," Pepys hears, " and they do talk 
of 6 or 8oo,ooo_^ gone into the Privy Purse this 
war, when in King James's time it arose to but ;£5ooo, 
and in King Charles's but ^10,000 in a year." Pepys's 
informant also reports that " a goldsmith in town told 
him that, being with some plate with my Lady 
Castlemaine lately, she directed her woman (the 
great beauty), ' Wilson,' says she, ' make a note for 

^ The loyal Sir John Reresby makes this defence of his master in 
such matters : " If love prevailed with him more than any other 
passion, he had this for excuse, besides that his complexion was of an 
amorous sort, the women seemed to be the aggressors." Lady Castle- 
maine certainly was not lacking in aggressive spirit. 



146 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

this, and for that, to the Privy Purse for money.' " 
This plate is doubtless the same which the Domestic 
State Papers show Charles II presenting to Lady 
Castlemaine this summer, weighing in all 5600 ounces. 

The King's lavish bounty to his mistress, on the 
top of the ^30,000 with which he had recently paid 
off her debts, did not prevent a most violent quarrel 
between them now. It seems to have had a double 
cause. In the first place, it was occasioned by Lady 
Castlemaine's intervention on behalf of her kinsman, 
the Duke of Buckingham. She had herself been on 
very ill terms with Buckingham in the previous year, 
and the Duke's candid comments on Court life 
(of which he was one of the leaders, when not, as he 
so frequently was, in disgrace) aroused Charles's 
anger against him. He got himself twice committed 
to the Tower in 1666 through the violence of his 
behaviour. His wit, " unrestrained by any modesty 
or religion," as Clarendon says, and his social talents 
reconciled him to the King, but he was soon in 
trouble again, leading the opposition in Parliament, 
and giving reasons for suspicion of more serious 
designs against the King. He was consequently 
stripped of all his offices, and once more, after some 
delay, committed to the Tower. 

As a Villiers herself, Barbara apparently felt called 
upon to come to his rescue, and Charles, though 
supposed to be ready enough to pardon him, was 
annoyed at this interference. In early July there 
was a great falling out, Charles and the lady parting 
" with very foul words." He called her, among 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 147 

other things, " a jade that meddled with things she 
had nothing to do with at all " ; while she said he 
was a fool, for if not a fool he would not suffer his 
business to be carried on by fellows that did not 
understand them, and cause his best subjects, and 
those best able to serve him, to be imprisoned. So 
irritated was His Majesty that it was believed he 
would never restore the Duke to office again. But 
in a few days came the news of Buckingham's release 
from the Tower without a trial, which Pepys declares 
" one of the strangest instances of the fool's play 
with which all publick things are done in this age." 
His restoration to his various offices only waited for 
the removal of Clarendon's opposition, which was not 
long in coming. 

The Duke of Buckingham's pardon was attributed 
to Lady Castlemaine's influence, the public being 
unable to believe that the King would remain at 
variance with her for any length of time. But there 
was more at the bottom of this quarrel. On July 
27th Pepys learns that the King and the lady " are 
quite broke off, and she is gone away, and is with 
child, and swears the King shall own it, and she will 
have it christened in the Chapel at Whitehall so, 
and owned for the King's, or she will bring it into 
Whitehall gallery and dash the brains of it out before 
the King's face." Soon after he has additional 
details, how that when Charles said the child was not 
his, " she made a slighting ' puh ' with her mouth 
and went out of the house, and never come in again 
till the King went to Sir Daniel Harvy's to pray her." 



148 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

According to Dr. Pierce, Charles was forced to go 
upon his knees, asking her forgiveness and promising 
to offend no more, before she would make it up with 
him again, even to the extent of receiving his visits 
at Harvey's house. 

The King, it was said, was convinced that the 
expected child, of which, by the way, we hear no 
more, would belong to Henry Jermyn, nephew of 
the Earl of St. Albans, and one of the villainous 
heroes of the Gramont Memoirs^ a complete courtier 
and fearful rake, though anything but a handsome 
man. Gramont represents Lady Castlemaine as 
infatuated with Jermyn, and the scandal of Whitehall, 
which had for some time connected her name with 
his, supports Gramont to the full. " The King," 
comments Pepys, " is mad at her entertaining Jermyn, 
and she is mad at Jermyn's going to marry away 
from her " — he was reputed to be engaged to the 
widowed Lady Falmouth, who, from her portrait 
by Lely, had one of the most charming faces of her 
time — " so they are all mad ; and thus the kingdom 
is governed." 

The outward appearance of tranquillity, however, 
is restored. The lady still remains at Harvey's 
house, where Charles visits her. But she does not 
avoid Whitehall, and is seen walking in the Privy 
Garden on " Bab " May's arm, immediately after 
the King. She gets her 5600 ounces of plate, she 
is credited with having a maternal uncle of hers, 
Dr. Glemham — " a drunken, swearing rascal, and a 
scandal to the church " — made a Bishop, and generally 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 149 

" hectors the King to whatever she will." The 
courtiers laugh at Charles's VQiy face about it. When 
he rallies the Duke of York on being henpecked 
by his wife, and compares him with Tom Otter, 
Ben Jonson's type of such a husband, the elder 
Killigrew asks : " Sir, pray which is best for a 
man, to be a Tom Otter to his wife or his mistress ? " 
The King's answer is not recorded, but the subject 
must have been a very sore one to this slave of an 
imperious beauty who denied him even the right 
of decision as to who were his own children. 

At some date between the 9th and the 26th of 
August the mistress returned to her apartments 
over the Holbein Gate, thus ratifying her peace with 
the King very soon after the signing of the Treaty 
of Breda, which brought peace to England, France, 
and Holland, and was the last important event in 
Clarendon's administration of Enghsh affairs. The 
Chancellor had opposed the summoning of Parliament 
before the Treaty of Breda was signed, and when 
after the signature it was summoned and immediately 
prorogued by the King, a violent outcry at once 
arose, not against Charles, but against the Minister 
who was accused of having advised this sudden 
prorogation. The opportunity had come for all 
Clarendon's enemies to band together to destroy 
his power for ever, and they were quick to seize 
upon it. 

Lady Castlemaine, fresh from her ovv^n personal 
triumph over Charles, figured as one of the chief 
actors in a very celebrated scene at Whitehall on 



I50 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

August 26th, 1667. ^^ about ten o'clock on the 
morning of that day the old Chancellor came to 
Whitehall for a conference with the King, who had 
decided to get rid of him, and had indeed already- 
sent the Duke of York to request him to deliver up 
the Great Seal. This the Chancellor would not do 
until he had seen his master, and accordingly an 
interview was arranged, no one else being present 
but the Duke. Charles explained his reason for 
requiring the Chancellor's retirement from office, 
which was that he was assured of Parliament's resolve 
to impeach him as soon as they met again, and saw 
no way of saving him except by dismissal. Clarendon 
disputed the necessity or propriety of this, and in 
the course of his argument, as he relates himself, 
" found a seasonable opportunity to mention the 
lady, with some reflections and cautions which he 
might more advisedly have declined." The result 
was that " after two hours' discourse the King rose 
without saying anything, but appeared not well 
pleased with all that had been said." The Duke of 
York (who was, of course. Clarendon's son-in-law, 
and who, to his credit, made efforts both before and 
after this interview to save him) discovered that it 
was at the reference to the lady that his brother was 
so angered. 

The King having gone, there was nothing for 
Clarendon to do but depart also. He made his way 
homeward through the Privy Garden, in which 
there were many watching to see him. He describes 
very briefly what occurred. " When the Chancellor 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 151 

returned, the lady, the Lord Arhngton, and Mr. 
May looked together out of her open window with 
great gaiety and triumph, which all people observed." 
The invaluable Dr. Pierce supplements this account 
in one of his gossips with Pepys. When the Chancellor 
left, he says. Lady Castlemaine was in bed, though 
it was about twelve o'clock, and she ran out in her 
smock into her aviary, looking into Whitehall Garden. 
Her woman — Wilson " the great beauty," we may 
presume — brought her her nightgown, or what we 
should now call her dressing-gown. And then my 
Lady " stood joying herself at the old man's going 
away : and several of the gallants of Whitehall, 
of which there were many staying to see the Chancellor 
return, did talk to her in her bird-cage ; among others, 
Blancford, telling her she was the bird of paradise." 

Two days after the interview Charles sent Sir 
William Morrice, Secretary of State, to receive the 
Seal from the Chancellor's hands. Morrice brought 
it back to the King, whereon Baptist May came in 
" and fell on his knees and kissed His Majesty's 
hand, telling him that he was now King, which he 
had never been before." Confirmed by his favourite 
advisers that he was acting rightly, Charles refused 
to relent, and insisted on his old and faithful friend's 
withdrawal from England. The ex-Chancellor left oa 
December 3rd, never to return. 

Clarendon asserts that he " could not comprehend 
or imagine from what fountain, except the power 
of the great lady with the conjunction of his known 
enemies, . . . that fierceness of the King's displeasure 



152 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

could arise." His view was shared by most other 
people, for example by Dr. Pierce, who told Pepys 
how " this business of my Lord Chancellor's was 
certainly designed in my Lady Castlemaine's cham- 
ber." Nor, indeed, could the Chancellor complain 
that he had been without warning from the mistress 
of his impending fate. Shortly before his fall he had 
stopped a grant from the King of a place worth 
£2000 a year (nominally to Viscount Grandison, the 
lady's uncle, but really for the use of her children), 
observing scornfully that this woman would soon 
sell everything. Lady Castlemaine at once sent him 
a message that " she had disposed of this place and 
did not doubt, in a little time, to dispose of his." 

" The lady," against whom Clarendon had stood 
out so steadfastly from the first, had taken six years 
to accomplish her revenge ; but that revenge was 
complete when it was attained. She did not, it is 
true, have the pleasure of seeing his head upon a 
stake, keeping company with those of the regicides 
on Westminster Hall, as she is said, in the presence 
of the Queen, to have expressed a wish to see it. 
But at least he was gone an exile from his country 
at the age of fifty-eight, after having borne the heat 
of the day with the ungrateful Charles before 1660, 
and guided his affairs since the Restoration. The 
" old dotard " could thwart her no more. 

Nor had she to pay any price for her vengeance. 
There was no public demonstration on behalf of 
the victim. Pepys, going to Bartholomew Fair on 
August 30th, finds the street full of people waiting 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 153 

to see Lady Castlemaine come out from a puppet- 
show. " I confess I did wonder at her courage 
to come abroad," he says, " thinking the people 
would abuse her ; but they, silly people ! do not 
know her work she makes, and therefore suffered 
her with great respect to take coach, and she away, 
without any trouble at all." She had, indeed, little 
reason to fear unpopularity over the latest exhibition 
of her power. Clarendon, at first at least, was almost 
without friends in the country, having to bear the 
odium of all the acts during his holding of the Great 
Seal, whether he had approved them or not. He 
brought this on himself, it cannot be denied. " Old 
Clarendon had as much povi^er as ever Premier Minister 
had," says a letter written some time after his fall. 
His manner created this impression. He appeared 
unwilling to let any one else speak at the Council- 
table — not even the King, according to Charles 
himself. He was intolerant of opposition, convinced 
of his own correctness of judgment, scornful of 
intriguers, and an honest man, who had bought 
himself no friends. There were no mourners, there- 
fore, at the funeral of his career. 

With those who succeeded to the power which 
the great Chancellor had kept in his hands for seven 
years Lady Castlemaine, like her friend Bab May 
and the rest of " that wicked crew," as Pepys calls 
them, was on easy terms. The Duke of Buckingham 
in particular, after Clarendon's removal not merely 
readmitted to the Privy Council, but the greatest 
man in it, was more friendly disposed to his cousin 



154 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

now than at any time before or after. A common 
feeling of hatred for the Chancellor had united them, 
as it had many other not naturally harmonious 
persons. The sentiment was at least strong enough 
to keep them together until all fear of a restoration 
of the old regime was past. 

Yet, in spite of the favourable appearance of affairs 
after the disappearance of her great enemy, all was 
not well with Lady Castlemaine's position at Court. 
At the very beginning of September 1667 rumours 
were afloat to the effect that she was " coming to 
a composition " with the King, to take a pension 
and retire to France. Pepys hears about it from 
four different sources in ten days, though one of his 
informants is incredulous about the likelihood of 
the wished-for event. Lord Brounker says that her 
demands are mighty high, and Sir William Batten 
speaks of a pension of ^^4000 a year. Povy, who does 
not think the composition will be successful, never- 
theless believes that '' the King is as weary of her 
as is possible, but he is so weak in his passion that he 
dare not do it." 

There can be no doubt that the tales repeated 
by these courtiers were not far from the truth. The 
King was eager to placate Parliament after it had been 
offended so grievously by his sudden prorogation of 
it. One of his readiest ways of pleasing both Houses 
would be to rid his Court of some of the women 
in it, especially Castlemaine, before the reassembly in 
October. Nor can Povy's estimate of his feelings 
toward his mistress be far wrong. She had no longer 



THE STRUGGLE FOR SUPREMACY 155 

the same sensual power over him as formerly. Possibly 
his passion for her had ceased entirely this year. The 
habit of her ascendancy over him remained and was 
destined to remain almost for another ten years, 
to the great cost of his pocket and the nation's. 
But the yoke galled, and the taunts of the courtiers 
in this singularly free-speaking Court were constantly 
touching him on the raw. In his efforts to break away 
from his bondage he will soon be seen widening the 
area of his attentions, and lending to the stage a 
patronage which was more royal than reputable. 

It is possible that some attempt was actually made to 
induce Lady Castlemaine to withdraw herself from 
Whitehall, at least while Parliament began its sittings. 
It is known from the Savile Correspondence that on 
September i6th she went down on a visit to Althorpe, 
the family seat of the Earls of Sunderland. Robert, 
the second Earl, and his wife Anne (Digby) were both 
born intriguers, and made up to Lady Castlemaine 
now as later they did to the Duchess of Portsmouth. 
The visit to Althorpe was quite short, but it is not 
until nearly the end of the year 1667 that we hear 
of the mistress at Court again. On Christmas Eve 
Pepys is led by his happily insatiable curiosity to 
the Queen's chapel, where he " got in up almost 
to the rail, and with a great deal of patience staid 
from nine at night to two in the morning, in a very 
great crowd ; and there expected, but found nothing 
extraordinary, there being nothing but a high mass." 
Pepys's comments are amusing, as usual. The music 
he found very good indeed, but the service very 



156 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

frivolous — " there can be no zeal go along with it " — 
though all things very rich and beautiful. Finally, 
" all being done, and I sorry for my coming, missing 
of what I expected ; which was, to have had a child 
born and dressed there, and a great deal to do : 
but we broke up, and nothing like it done : and 
there I left people receiving the Sacrament : and the 
Queen gone and ladies ; only my Lady Castlemaine, 
who looked pretty in her night-clothes, and so took 
my coach and away through Covent Garden, to set 
down two gentlemen and a lady, who come thither 
to see also and did make mighty mirth in their talk 
of the folly of this religion." 

A dozen years later Pepys was in serious trouble 
for his supposed Papist sympathies ! But his accusers 
had not the privilege of reading his Diary. 




Fjoiii a photoiiraph by Emery Walker, after a copy flf a picture hy 
Sir Peter Lely in the National Portrait Gallery 

BARBARA VILLIERS, COUNTESS OF CASTLEMAINE 
AND DUCHESS OF CLEVELAND 



CHAPTER VIII 
THE DECLINING MISTRESS 

A PERIOD of great disorder, as Burnet calls it, 
was now opening for Lady Castlemaine. She was 
still at Whitehall, but her hold over the King, to whom 
her hectoring was so wearisome, was no longer the 
same in nature as it had been formerly. Frances 
Stewart was in London again, staying at Somerset 
House with her husband, and the King had already 
at the end of 1667 made overtures to her to return to 
Court. A disfiguring attack of smallpox in the follow- 
ing spring failed to make the Duchess less beautiful in 
his eyes ; indeed, caused him, in his own words, to 
" pardon all that is past." The Richmonds were for- 
given — seemingly against the Duke's own wish, and with 
some considerable reluctance on the part of the lady — 
and in July Frances was made a Lady of the Bed- 
chamber to the Queen, who was fond of her and had 
earlier interceded on her behalf. In token of his 
affection for the wife Charles found occasion to send 
the husband on missions, first to Scotland and then 
to Denmark, on the latter of which he died. Frances 
was left a widow at the end of 1672, and never married 
again. Her reputation suffered considerably after her 
return to Court, and apparently with justification, 

157 



158 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

though in such an age of scandal it is difficult to know 
how much to beheve. At least, however, she was as 
modest in her requisitions from the Royal purse as 
Lady Castlemaine was exorbitant, and when she died, 
at the age of fifty-four, had been so far rehabilitated 
in character as to figure at the coronation of Queen 
Anne. 

But it was not so much an old flame of the King's 
that caused Lady Castlemaine annoyance as some new 
flames, discovered in quite a different class of society 
from that of the Court. According to Burnet, it was 
the Duke of Buckingham who directed his master's 
attention to the beauties of the stage, in order to 
punish his cousin for opposing his scheme of persuad- 
ing Charles to divorce his childless wife and marry 
again. That there was actually talk of putting away 
Catherine o£ Braganza, after the fall of Clarendon, 
her best friend, there is evidence. She was to retire 
to a nunnery for the remainder of her life, a divorce 
was to be procured, with the help of a complaisant 
Archbishop of Canterbury — the enemies of Gilbert 
Sheldon declared him ready to oblige the King — and 
a new wife was to be found. Whether Charles could 
have ever brought himself to take these steps is very 
doubtful, for he had a curious kind of regard for 
the wife he so gaily and grossly wronged ; but at least 
he allowed himself to consider the scheme. Lady 
Castlemaine, however, for once became a warm 
partisan of the Queen and, when she discovered who 
was the arch-plotter, quarrelled with Buckingham, 
never to be reconciled again. An unofficial rival was 



THE DECLINING MISTRESS 159 

bad enough, but a new Queen — and this time probably 
an EngHshwoman — threatened a death-blow to her 
power. 

Therefore, as the story goes, Buckingham deter- 
mined to undermine the influence which he could not 
sweep away. He made the first advance with the 
introduction of Mary Davis, once a milkmaid, now 
an actress. Reputed a daughter of one of the Howards, 
Earls of Berkshire, near whose Wiltshire house she was 
borne by a blacksmith's wife, she springs into noto- 
riety in January 1668. Previously she is only " little 
Mis. Davis " of the Duke's Playhouse, whom Pepys 
describes to us as dancing a jig in boy's clothes and 
infinitely outshining as a dancer Nell Gwynn of the 
King's House. But it was not her dancing as much 
as her singing which charmed Charles's heart. Tra- 
ditionally it was her rendering of a ballad, " My lodg- 
ing it is on the cold ground," which raised her to a 
higher sphere. On January 13th there was an amateur 
performance of The Indian Emferor at Court, in which 
the Duke and Duchess of Monmouth and others took 
part. The players of the Duke's House were present, 
having no doubt coached the amateurs for the affair. 
Mrs. Pierce, who sat near them, describes A4olI Davis 
to Pepys and his wife next day as " the most imper • 
tinent slut in the world ; and the more now the King 
do show her countenance ; and is reckoned his mistress, 
even to the scorne of the whole world ; the King 
gazing on her, and my Lady Castlemaine being melan- 
choly and out of humour, all the play, not smiling 
once." The King, it is said, has given her a ring worth 



i6o MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

^700, which she shows to everybody, and has furnished 
for her most richly a house in Suffolk Street ; " which 
is a most infinite shame," observes Pepys. The Queen 
was disgusted, and at a performance in the Whitehall 
theatre one night she was observed to take her de- 
parture when Mrs. Davis came on to dance her jig. 
For the mistress, however, it was more serious to be 
out of request than for Her Majesty, so that \'ve are 
not surprised to hear from Pepys again that she is 
" mighty melancholy and discontented " — especially 
as scandal makes Moll Davis not the only new rival, but 
has already begun to hint at Nell Gwynn and others. 

But Lady Castlemaine did not content herself with 
being " mighty melancholy and discontented " over 
the King's bestowal of his affections in a nevv^ quarter. 
She promptly paid him back in his own coin. She 
was a well-known patron of the drama, not only of 
playwrights, but of performers also. She had been a 
great friend even to Nell Gwynn for a time. Among 
her other actress acquaintances was Rebecca Marshall, 
of the King's House, through whom she obtained an 
introduction to her fellow-actor, Charles Hart, great- 
nephew of Shakespeare, and reputed to have been 
the first lover of Nell Gwynn. One day Pepys is told 
by Mrs. Knipp of the King's — of whom Mrs. Pepys 
was very legitimately jealous — some " mighty news, 
that my Lady Castlemaine is mightily in love with 
Hart of their house, and he is much with her in 
private, and she goes to him and do give him many 
presents ; . . . . and by this means she is even with 
the King's love to Mrs. Davis." 



THE DECLINING MISTRESS i6i 

Such a story, interesting no doubt to other members 
of the King's House company as well as the lively 
Mrs. Knipp, must soon have got around the town. It 
is not surprising, therefore, that among the " libertine 
libels " that Evelyn says were printed and thrown 
about now was a bold mock-petition to Lady Castle- 
maine, who was horribly vexed at it, according to 
Pepys. There had been near the end of March some 
riots in the low quarters of London, in the course of 
which a mob of holiday-making apprentices and others 
pulled down a number or houses of ill-repute. Some 
jester, who naturally took good precautions to keep his 
identity secret, promptly came out with a petition 
addressed to " The most Splendid, Illustrious, and 
Eminent Lady of Pleasure, the Countess of Castle- 
mayne." This was indeed, as Pepys remarks, " not very 
witty, but devilish severe against her and the King." 
It may be permissible, however, to quote a reason- 
ably decent part of the document, of which a copy is 
preserved in the British Museum to-day. The victims 
of the late riots are made to say : 

..." We being moved by the imminent danger 
now impending, and the great sense of our present 
suffering, do implore your Honour to improve your 
Interest, which (all know) is great. That some speedy 
Relief may be afforded us, to prevent Our Utter Ruine 
and Undoing. And that such a sure course may be 
taken with the Ringleaders and Abetters of these evil- 
disposed persons, that a stop may be put unto them 
before they come to Your Honours Pallace, and bring 
contempt upon your worshipping of Venus, the great 



i62 MY LADY CASTLEATAINE 

Goddess whom we all adore. . . . And we shall en- 
deavour, as our bounden duty, the promoting of your 
Great Name, and the preservation of your Honour, 
Safety, and Interest, with the hazzard of our Lives, 
Fortunes, and Honesty. 

" And your Petitioners shall (as by custom bound) 
Evermore Play &c. 

" Signed by Us, Madam Cresswell and Damaris Page, 
in the behalf of our Sisters and Fellow- Sufferers (in 
this time of our Calamity) in Dog and Bitch Yard, 
Lukeners Lane, Saffron Hill, Moor-fields, Chiswell- 
street, Rosemary-Lane, Nightingale-Lane, Ratcliffe- 
High-way, Well-close, Church-Lane, East-Smith- 
field, &c., this present 25th day of March, 1668." 

A month later there was a pretended reply published 
called " The Gracious Answer of the most Illustrious 
Lady of Pleasure the Countess of Castlem . . ." and 
dated " Given at our Closset in King Street, 
Westminster,^ die Veneris April 24 1668." As 
an indication of the state of the public mind toward 
the royal mistress at this period, some of this is of 
interest. 

" Right Trusty and Well-beloved Madam Cresswell 
and Damaris Page, with the rest of the suffering Sister- 
hood," it begins, "... We greet you well, in giving 
you to understand our Noble Mind, by returning our 
Thanks, which you are worthy of in rendring us 
our Titles of Honour, which are but our Due. For on 

^ Which might be taken to show that the lady was residing in her 
husband's house again ; but " the Street " which ran through White- 
hall Palace and over which the Countess lived in her gatehouse was 
practically a continuation of King Street. 



THE DECLINING MISTRESS 163 

Shrove-Tuesday last, Splendidly did we appear upon 
the Theatre at W. H. being to amazement wonderfully 
deck'd with Jewels and Diamonds, which the (abhorr'd 
and to be undone) Subjects of the Kingdom have 
payed for. We have been also Serene and Illustrious 
ever since the Day that Mars was so instrumental to 
restore our Goddess Venus to her Temple and Worship; 
where, by special grant we quickly became a famous 
Lady : And as a Reward of our Devotions soon created 
Right Honourable, the Countess of Castlemain.'''' 

Lady Castlemaine is made to go on to explain that 
she has become a convert to the Church of Rome — 
rather a belated announcement ! — where worthy 
fathers and confessors declare that certain things 
" are not such heynous Crimes and crying Sins, but 
rather they do mortilie the Flesh." She is made to 
allude to the story of the Fire of 1666 being due to 
" the Good Roman Catholicks " and to threaten : 
" But for our Adversaries with the Rebellious Citizens, 
Let them look to it when the French are ready (who 
as yet drop in by small parties, and lie incognito with 
the rest of the Catholicks) we shall deal with them, as 
we did with their Brethren in Ireland." 

A certain skill in the drawing up of this precious 
" Answer " and its language and allusions suggest that 
it was composed by some one in Court circles. Courtiers 
were fond of gratifying their malice in writing such 
libels, though most often in verse. No one, however, 
came forward later to father either the " Petition " 
or the " Answer," so that the authorship of both must 
remain a mystery. 



i64 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

It is curious that the " splendid appearance " of the 
lady at the Theatre at W(hite) H(all) on Shrove Tues- 
day is attested by Evelyn, though his language is less 
complimentary than that of the libel. The entry in his 
Diary for February 4th, 1668, is as follows : — 

" I saw the tragedy of ' Horace ' (written by the 
virtuous Mrs. Phillips) acted before their Majesties. 
'Twixt each act a masq and antiq daunce. The 
excessive gallantries of the ladies was infinite, those 
especially on that . . . Castlemaine esteem'd at 
^40,000 and more, far outshining the Queene." 

Of Lady Castlemaine's large expenditure on jewelry 
we have heard before. She may have been particularly 
reckless nov/, in the " disorder " to which Burnet sees 
her driven by the loss of the King. She was also 
gambling heavily at this time, risking ;£iooo and £1500 
on a single cast, winning _£i 5,000 one night and losing 
^25,000 another. And then there were her presents to 
Hart. We do not know their extent, but she was wont 
to be very generous to her later favourites, and doubt- 
less was so to Hart now. 

A handsome gift from the King this spring scarcely 
lessened her debts ; or, more probably, added to her 
expenses. He gave her a house, which she proceeded 
to furnish herself. Coupled as it was with his renewed 
attentions to Frances, Duchess of Richmond, and his 
infatuation with Moll Davis, Charles's removal of his 
titular mistress out of his own immediate neighbour- 
hood had something ominous about it. But the house 
was undeniably a fine one and cost him, it appears, 



THE DECLINING MISTRESS 165 

^5000, which was the sum that passed the Privy 
Seal for it. It was Berkshire House, standing in ex- 
tensive grounds (which included the present Green 
Park) to the north-west of St. James's Park, on the 
further side of the Palace. Formerly the London 
residence of the first two Earls of Berkshire, it had 
been recently occupied by the Lord Chancellor 
Clarendon. It was strange that the next owner should 
be the lady for whom the grant for ;^5000 could 
scarcely have been even suggested in the imperious 
old Chancellor's time. 

With her departure from Whitehall Lady Castle- 
maine takes a less prominent place in the public eye ; 
that is, if we can judge by the eye of Samuel Pepys. 
He only records one vision of her between December 
1667 and December 1668. This is on May 5th at 
the Duke of York's Playhouse, where Shadwell's 
The Imfertinents is being performed. Pepys sits in 
the balcony-box — " where we find my Lady Castle- 
maine and several great ladies " — close to " her 
fine woman Wilson," with whom he gets into con- 
versation, no doubt to his great satisfaction. He 
is, indeed, in as close touch with the admired one 
as at any time in his Ufe. What he finds to remark 
on, however, is rather unromantic : " One thing 
of familiarity I observed in my Lady Castlemaine : 
she called to one of her women, another that sat 
by this [Wilson], for a little patch off her face, and 
put it into her mouth and wetted it, and so clapped 
it upon her own by the side of her mouth, I suppose 
she feeling a pimple rising there ! " 



1 66 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Not until December 21st in the same year is the 
lady seen again. On that day Pepys is once more at 
the Duke's and witnesses a performance of Macbeth. 
" The King and Court there ; and we sat just under 
them and my Lady Castlemaine, and close to the 
woman that comes into the pit, a kind of loose gossip 
that pretends to be like her, and is so, something. . . . 
The King and Duke minded me, and smiled upon me, 
at the handsome woman near me : but it vexed me 
to see Moll Davis, in the box over the King's and 
my Lady Castlemaine's head, look down upon the 
King, and he up to her ; and so did my Lady Castle- 
maine once, to see who it was ; but when she saw her, 
she looked like fire ; which troubled me." 

The theatre occupied a good deal of the Court's 
attention at this period, apart from its connection with 
the King's amours. In the middle of January there 
was a great disturbance at Whitehall Palace, " even 
to the sober engaging of great persons," according to 
the Diary, " and making the King cheap and ridicu- 
lous." A certain actress, Mrs. Corey, playing the 
part of Sempronia in Catiline^s Conspiracy, took 
it on herself to imitate Lady Harvey, wife of Lady 
Castlemaine's host in the summer of 1667.^ This 
Lady Harvey was by birth Anne Montagu, sister of 
Ralph (of whom we shall soon hear much) and cousin 
of the two Edward Montagus, Lord Sandwich and 

1 It would appear that there was some sort of connection between 
the Harveys and the Castlemaines, for the Earl of Castlemaine in 1668 
accompanied Sir Daniel Harvey on the mission to the Porte mentioned 
below. 



THE DECLINING MISTRESS 167 

the Earl of Manchester, The Earl of Manchester 
was Lord Chamberlain, and to him Anne naturally- 
appealed in her indignation. The Lord Chamberlain 
promptly put the offending actress in prison ; where- 
upon Lady Castlemaine, for some reason at enmity 
with her former hostess, insisted on the King ordering 
Mrs. Corey's release and performance of the part of 
Sempronia before his own eyes. Lady Harvey, in 
her turn, provided people to hiss and to fling oranges 
at the actress. The Court was divided in its sympathies, 
taking the affair very seriously ; but unfortunately 
we hear no more about it. 

The mistress's successful intervention in this matter 
shows her still able to rule the King, in spite of the 
fact that politically the Duke of Buckingham was all 
in all and that she and he were now mortal enemies. 
In her hatred for her cousin she drew closer to the 
chief opponents of the Buckingham interest at Court, 
the Duke and Duchess of York, who, it should be 
noted, were her closest neighbours in St. James's 
Park. Buckingham, having failed in his scheme for 
the divorce of Catherine of Braganza and a remarriage 
of the King, was eager for Charles to legitimise the 
Duke of Monmouth and make him the heir to the 
throne, so cutting out the Duke of York from the 
succession. Thus, though the mistress had con- 
tributed so much to the ruin of Clarendon, the 
Duchess's own father, the Yorks were induced to 
enter into an alliance with her as their best resource 
at need. 

How powerful an ally she was is abundantly plain. 



i68 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Povy sums the situation up admirably for Pepys on 
January i6th, 1669 : " My Lady Castlemaine is now 
in a higher command over the King than ever — not as a 
mistress, for she scorns him, but as a tyrant to com- 
mand him." All in vain had Charles sent the lady to 
Berkshire House. Her iron grip was on him still, 
however much he might try to disguise the fact from 
himself. For he did try. We read in a letter written 
to Louis XIV by Colbert, his new Ambassador at 
Whitehall, on January 14th, that it is inadvisable to 
lavish handsome gifts upon Madame Castlemaine ^ to 
buy her support for France, since then " His Majesty 
may think that, despite his assertions to the contrary, 
we fancy that she rules him, and may take it ill." Tom 
Otter was sensitive ! 

Pepys had the good luck to be eye-witness on one 
occasion of the close relations of Lady Castlemaine 
and the Yorks this spring. He and Sir Jeremiah 
Smith went on March 4th to Deptford, where the 
Duke and Duchess were on a visit to the Treasurer's 
house. Here, after a dinner by invitation with the 
Duchess's maids of honour (" which did me good to 
have the honour to dine with and look on "), they go 
upstairs and " find the Duke of York and Duchess, 

1 We hear, however, of one handsome gift. On May 3rd, 1669, 
Ralph Montagu writes from Paris to Lord Arlington: "1 went to 
Martiall's to look for gloves, and I saw a present which I am sure must 
cost a thousand pounds packing up. I found since that it is for my 
Lady Castlemaine, which you will quickly knov/ there. I asked him 
who it was for, but he could not or would not tell me. I asked him 
who paid him ; he told m.e, the King of France, and that he had an 
order from Mr. Colbert for his money, to whom he is to give the 
things." 



THE DECLINING MISTRESS 169 

with all the great ladies, sitting upon a carpet, on the 
ground, there being no chairs, playing at ' I love my 
love with an A, because he is so and so ; and I hate 
him with an A, because he is this and that ' ; and some 
of them, but particularly the Duchess herself, and my 
Lady Castlemaine, were very witty." 

We could wish that Pepys had thought fit to set 
down some examples of the wit. But unfortunately 
he did not. And, more unfortunately still, the never- 
equalled Diary comes to an end three months later, 
to the incalculable injury of posterity. In the case of 
Lady Castlemaine, its cessation means the loss of 
those hundred little intimate details which bring the 
person described vividly before us. Only once more 
before he ceases to delight us does Pepys mention the 
great lady in whom he is so interested. On April 28th 
Sir H. Cholmly, calling upon him about some Navy 
Office accounts, proceeds to other talk and tells him 
of his proposals for a league with France in return for 
a sum of money, which have been supported by such 
various people as the Duke and Duchess of York, the 
Queen-Mother, and Lord Arlington, though he is of 
the Buckingham faction. And, also, " my Lady Castle- 
maine is instrumental in this matter, and, he says, 
never more great with the King than she is now." 

The Diary takes leave of the royal mistress with 
her political power vigorous and using it (no doubt 
for a sufficient consideration, even if diplomacy made 
the givers discreet) on behalf of the country whose 
ambassadors she had, five years previously, succeeded 
in thwarting. At this moment, before the appearance 



1 70 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

on the scene of the lady who ousted her from her 
position of mistress en titre, we may conveniently 
pause to consider the condition of her affairs in general. 
Thanks to the King's generosity, combined with his 
desire to keep her at a safer distance than when she was 
in apartments next his own at Whitehall, the Countess, 
having reached the age of twenty-eight, was residing 
at Berkshire House, standing in its own grounds, with 
no nearer neighbours than St. James's Palace. Her 
three youngest children, Henry, Charlotte, and George, 
were possibly living with her. The two eldest, Anne 
and Charles, aged eight and seven respectively, are 
known to have been in Paris now, receiving such 
education as was thought fit for them. The unfor- 
tunate Lord Castlemaine was still out of the country. 
After his final separation from his wife in December 
1666 — " never to trouble one another more " — he 
had gone abroad, to remain there for eleven years 
without a visit to England, as far as is known. In 1668 
he was a member of the mission sent by Charles to 
Turkey, and he continued to travel for his own plea- 
sure until 1677. 

To maintain the mistress in the independent position 
in which he had placed her Charles, about this time, 
bestowed upon her a regular income. We have seen 
that as early as the beginning of September 1667 
there had been rumours of an intended pension, 
possibly £^000 a year, to be paid on condition that 
she withdrew to France. She had not withdrawn to 
France, though the expectation of her doing so was 
occasionally revived. She obtained her pension, how- 



THE DECLINING MISTRESS 171 

ever, without such a sacrifice. A grant was made out 
of the revenues of the Post Office of a sum of ;^4700 
a year. In accordance with former precedents, to 
make the transaction less notorious, the grant was not 
in the lady's own name, but in those of her uncles Vis- 
count Grandison and Edward Villiers. 

Such a sum, indeed, was inadequate to meet her 
extravagant expenditure, which is no doubt the reason 
why she is found soon after to have sold Berkshire 
House, keeping only part of the grounds on which 
to erect a new mansion. But at least it enabled 
her to gratify some of her desires, such as the bestowal 
of presents upon favourites. The disorder of her life 
was increasing. Acting upon her determination to be 
even with the King, she had descended from Charles 
Hart the actor to Jacob Hall the rope-dancer, whom 
Pepys sees at Bartholomew and Southwark Fairs in 
the autumn of 1668 and finds " a mighty strong man." 
Granger, writing a century later and therefore not 
from personal acquaintance, says that " there was a 
symmetry and elegance, as well as strength and agility, 
in the person of Jacob Hall, which was much admired 
by the ladies, who regarded him as a due composition 
of Hercules and Apollo." Gramont, as might be 
expected, has something to say on the subject, the 
gist of which is that Lady Castlemaine's fancy was 
notorious, " but she despised all rumours and only 
appeared still more handsome." She went so far as 
to pay the rope-dancer a salary, according to Granger. 
She certainly had her portrait painted with him, for 
the picture is still in existence. " You know as to love 



172 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

one is not mistriss of one's self," she wrote to Charles 
eight years later. She proved this amply in her own 
case, it cannot be denied. 

It would seem that the scandal did not fail to pro- 
duce the effect which the lady desired. The King 
appreciated the indignity of his mistress entering into 
a contest with him in which the weapons were the 
degradation of the combatants. But, characteristically, 
beyond a sarcastic comment,^ his only punishment for 
Lady Castlemaine's offence was to bestow a new 

honour upon her. 

1 Seep. 1 88. 



CHAPTER IX 
SUPPLANTED 

'pARLY in 1670 Louis XIV achieved his desire of 
binding England to France in close political union. 
Negotiations had been proceeding for a long time, for- 
warded, as we have seen, by a variety of persons in 
this country, including the royal mistress to a certain 
extent. To hasten their conclusion Louis sent to 
England Charles's sister, the Duchess of Orleans, 
whom Charles had often declared to be the only 
woman who had any hold upon him. This Louis did 
much against the wishes of his brother Orleans, who 
was apparently afraid that his wife was too well in- 
clined to the young and handsome Duke of Mon- 
mouth, her nephew, and asked Charles to send him 
on a visit to Holland during her stay in England. 
The story of the Orleans mission has much tragedy 
in it, and a little comedy. On May i6th Hen- 
rietta landed at Dover, bringing in her train as 
maid of honour a young lady of twenty-one years of 
age called Louise Renee de Keroualle, who at once 
attracted the ever roving eyes of Charles. Un- 
consciously perhaps at first, France had discovered the 
means of securing the English King's affections, as 
well as interests, on her side. Instead of buying the 

173 



174 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

English mistress, which would be a difficult and expen- 
sive matter, she sold him a French one. Charles's passion 
for Barbara Palmer was doubtless dead and buried 
before Louise de Keroualle set foot in England ; but 
the latter's appearance shortened the remaining empire 
over the King of her who had ruled him so long. It 
was impossible to keep two such harpies simultaneously 
in the immediate neighbourhood of the Privy Purse, 
though not impossible (as it was unfortunately dis- 
covered) to have one of them, as it were, installed on 
the table in the Palace and the other hovering outside 
at no great distance, ready to swoop in and carry off 
the side-dishes. 

Louise de Keroualle did not immediately step into 
her disreputable position. In June the Duchess of 
Orleans returned to France, after a secret treaty had 
been signed at Dover on the 1st, by which Charles 
bound England to engage with France in war against 
Holland, in return for a subsidy of three million francs 
a year, with an extra two million for declaring him- 
self a Roman Catholic. With the Duchess returned 
her maid of honour, but not before Charles had 
gallantly intimated how much he would like to keep 
her at the English Court. On June 29th the Duchess, 
after having been welcomed back most graciously by 
Louis and his Queen, but very sourly by her husband, 
died so suddenly that there were at first suspicions of 
foul play, and the relations between the English and 
French Courts became rather cool. To remedy this, 
somebody, perhaps Colbert, one of the astutest of 
ambassadors, suggested that the charming maid of 




,!■ ^ 



/•■- 



■vlVii a mezzotint engnu'ing a/tcf //.t /\unt:ii^ by Sir Peter Lcly 



BARBARA VILLIERS, COUNTESS OF CASTLEMAINE 
AND DUCHESS OF CLEVELAND 



SUPPLANTED 175 

honour should be sent to London. It was said also 
that the Duke of Buckingham, whom Charles 
despatched to Paris to thank Louis for his con- 
dolences on Henrietta's death and to strengthen 
the harmony between the two Powers, had repre- 
sented to his King that it would be very fitting for 
him now to look after the interests of his late 
sister's young attendant.^ Buckingham, it must be 
remembered, was now actively hostile to the mistress 
in possession and was eager therefore to see her de- 
prived of her remaining power. Louise made a show 
of reluctance, but finally gave way and crossed the 
Channel in charge of Ralph Montagu, the English 
Ambassador in Paris. On November 4th, 1670, 
Evelyn saw at Court for the first time " that famous 
beauty, but in my opinion of a childish, simple, and 
baby face, Mademoiselle de Querouaille, lately Maide 
of Honor to Madame, and now to be so to the 
Queene." On her arrival in England Louise still 
proved very coy, to the alarm of Louis's representative 
at Whitehall, who feared that the plan of binding 
Charles firmly to the French side by means of the 
lady might miscarry. Almost another year had to pass 
before the beauty would give way. No doubt she 

^ The Marquis de Saint-Maurice, Savoy's Ambassador in Paris, 
writing to the Duke Charles Emmanuel II on September 19th, says : 
"The Duke of Buckingham has taken with him Mile, de Keroualle, 
who was attached to her late Highness ; she is a beautiful girl, and it 
is thought that the plan is to make her mistress to the King of Great 
Britain. He would like to dethrone Lady Castlemaine, who is his 
enemy, and His Most Christian Majesty will not be sorry to see the 
position filled by one of his subjects, for it is said the ladies have great 
influence over the mind of the said King of England." 



176 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

understood the game better than even Colbert. Cer- 
tainly, when once she stooped to conquer, she esta- 
blished herself in her position for the remainder of the 
King's lifetime. 

As Louise de Keroualle did not even reach England 
until the autumn of 1670, Charles's gift of a new and 
higher title to the Countess of Castlemaine in the 
summer of that year cannot be regarded in the 
light of a consolation to the mistress whom he was 
replacing by another. It was on August 23rd that he 
created her Baroness Nonsuch, Countess of Southamp- 
ton, and Duchess of Cleveland. It is significant that 
in the patent the remainder is granted to Charles and 
George Fitzroy, described as her first and second sons, 
the paternity of Henry thus being still disowned by 
the King. Henry had to wait another two years for 
recognition. 

The Gramont Memoirs give an extraordinary reason 
for Charles's bestowal of the new honour upon Lady 
Castlemaine at this moment. According to them, it 
was the result of a violent quarrel between King and 
lady over her continued infatuation for Henry 
Jermyn. Charles, says Gramont, " did not think it 
consistent with his dignity that a mistress whom he 
had honoured with public distinction, and who still 
received considerable support from him, should appear 
chained to the car of the most ridiculous conqueror 
that ever was. His Majesty had frequently expostu- 
lated with the Countess upon this subject, but his 
expostulations were never attended to. It was in one 
of these differences that, when he advised her to bestow 



SUPPLANTED 177 

her favours upon Jacob Hall the rope-dancer, who 
was able to return them, rather than lavish her money 
upon Jermyn to no purpose, since it would be more 
honourable to her to pass for the mistress of the 
former than for the very humble servant of the latter, 
she was not proof against his raillery. The impetuosity 
of her temper broke forth like lightning." Reproaches 
against his promiscuous and low amours, floods of 
tears, and Medea-like threats of destroying her 
children and burning his palace followed. The King, 
who only wanted peace, was in despair how to obtain 
it. So Gramont (he says) was called in as mediator 
by mutual consent. He drew up a treaty by which he 
managed to please both parties. This ran as follows : 

" That Lady Castlemaine should give up Jermyn 
for ever ; that, as a proof of her sincerity and the 
reality of his disgrace, she should agree to his being 
sent into the country for some time ; that she should 
rail no more against Mile. Wells [one of the maids of 
honour who had attracted the King] or Mile. Stewart ; 
and this without any constraint on the King's be- 
haviour to her ; that in consideration of these con- 
descensions His Majesty should immediately give her 
the title of Duchess, with all the honours and privileges 
appertaining thereto, and an addition to her pension 
to enable her to support the dignity." 

The proceedings at the Court of Charles H were 
certainly extraordinary, but not quite so extraordinary 
as to induce us to credit a tale like this in its entirety. 
It is, however, not improbable that there was some 

N 



178 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

such quarrel between the King and his mistress as the 
Memoirs describe, and that the latter exacted as the 
price o£ peace the rank of Duchess. Charles was never 
grudging with titles. 

The choice of the names Cleveland and Southamp- 
ton is unexplained. An earlier Cleveland peerage had 
lapsed three years previously when Thomas Went- 
worth, Earl of Cleveland, one of the heroes of the 
Battle of Worcester, died leaving only a granddaughter, 
Lady Henrietta Wentworth, afterwards mistress of 
the Duke of Monmouth. Southampton was the first 
title of Barbara's old enemy the Lord Treasurer — 
Thomas Wriothesley, Earl of Southampton and 
Chichester ; and it is curious to notice that Charles 
Fitzroy, who was now, as first heir to his mother, 
created Earl of Southampton, was three years later 
made Duke of Southampton and Earl of Chichester. 
The grant of the barony of Nonsuch no doubt in- 
dicated that the King had already decided on the gift 
of Nonsuch House, which he made five months 
later. 

The assumption of her new rank was followed by 
the Duchess's bestowal of the name of Cleveland 
House on the residence she was building on the unsold 
portions of the Berkshire House estate. Cleveland 
House, described by Evelyn as " a noble palace, too 
good for that infamous . . ." (here words fail him), 
was pulled down and replaced by Bridgewater House 
in the middle of the nineteenth century, but its 
memory is preserved in the present-day Cleveland 
Square and Row, Westminster. It was perhaps for 



SUPPLANTED 179 

the decoration of the grounds of her new house that 
the Cupid was intended which is mentioned in the 
last letter in the Chesterfield collection addressed to 
the " Dutches of Cleaveland," dated 1670. Lord 
Chesterfield, a year ago married for the third time, 
boasts of his obedience to the least of the Duchess's 
commands, having as soon as he came to town be- 
spoken a figure for her fountain, a Cupid kneeling on 
a rock and shooting from his bow a stream of water 
up towards heaven. " This may be interpreted by- 
some," he writes, " that your ladyship, not being 
content v/ith the conquest of one world, doth now 
by your devotions attack the other. I hope this stile 
hath to much gravity to appear gallant ; since many 
years agoe your ladyship gave me occasion to repeate 
those two lines : 

" VoHS in ''otes tout espoir pour vous, belle inhumame, 
Et pour tout autre que vous vous v^otes tout desir.^'' 

Doubtless Her Grace reflected, as she read the 
closing words of this letter, on the existence of Lady 
Chesterfield number three — for whose loss, by the 
way, her husband evinced considerable sorrow when 
she died in 1678. 

In this year of fresh honours to her Lady of the Bed- 
chamber, there seems to have been a revival of the 
rumours of the coming divorce of the unhappy Queen. 
Burnet is our authority for the prevalence of talk about 
the probability of Catherine " turning religious " and 
a bill being brought before Parliament to legalise a 
divorce. With his usual readiness to attribute the 



i8o MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

worst to Charles himself,^ he makes him the originator 
of the scheme. " It was beUeved," he continues, 
" that upon this the Duchess of York sent an express 
to Rome with the notice of her conversion ; and that 
orders were sent from Rome to all about the Queen 
to persuade her against such a proposition, if any 
should suggest it to her. She herself had no mind 
to be a nun, and the Duchess was afraid of seeing 
another Queen ; and the mistress, created at that 
time Duchess of Cleveland, knew that she must be 
the first sacrifice to a beloved Queen ; and she recon- 
ciled herself upon this to the Duchess of York." 

There is no reason to doubt that the divorce 
rumours were actually current again in 1670, to whom- 
ever the revival of the scheme was due. Once more 
the Queen had disappointed her husband's hopes in 
the previous year, and he might well despair now of 
ever seeing a legitimate heir from her. As for the 
alliance between the Duchess of Cleveland and the 
Yorks, the reasons for their opposition to the idea of 
a new queen were as good as ever. We do not know, 
apart from what Burnet says, of any necessity for 
" reconciliation " between the two Duchesses. Her 
Royal Highness seems to have become a Roman 
Catholic at heart as early as 1668, but it was not until 

^ In return Charles impugned the Bishop's truthfulness. The 
then exiled Queen (Mary of Modena), meeting George Granville, 
first Baron Lansdowne in Paris at the time when Burnet's History 
appeared, told him that she well remembered Dr. Burnet and his 
character; "that the King and the Duke, and the whole Court, looked 
upon him as the greatest liar upon the face of the earth, and there was 
no believing one word that he said." 



SUPPLANTED i8i 

two years later that she was actually received into 
the Church. The Duke of York's conversion is placed 
by Sir John Reresby in the same year. According to 
his Memoirs, when Henrietta of Orleans paid her 
momentous visit to England, she " confirmed His 
High Highness the Duke in the Popish superstition, 
of which he had as yet been barely suspected ; and it 
is said to have been his grand argument for such his 
adherence to those tenets, that his mother had, upon 
her last blessing, commanded him to be firm and 
steadfast thereto." James, from his own Memoirs, 
appears not to have withdrawn from the Church 
of England until 1672. Both he and his wife, how- 
ever, w'ere in feeling Roman Catholics considerably 
before their respective conversions and had therefore 
a bond of sympathy with the royal mistress, poor 
ornament though she might be to any church. 
Buckingham's strong Protestantism, on the other 
hand, made him still more bitterly hostile to his cousin 
and the Yorks as he saw them drawn closer together. 
It also forced the King to keep him, like Lauderdale 
and Ashley — all members of the ruling " cabal " — 
actually ignorant, when they signed a treaty with 
France on the last day of 1670, that there was the 
secret Treaty of Dover already in force seven months 
ago ! We need not suppose that the Duchess of 
Cleveland had any knowledge of this stupendous piece 
of duphcity, although the Duke of York (and there- 
fore possibly his wife) had. Charles was not so foolish 
as to commit so ruinous a secret to the keeping of a 
lady with a temper and a tongue like Barbara's. 



1 82 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

The ever-rising French influence, even before the 
estabHshment of Louise de Keroualle as mistress, 
doubtless accounts for the very few pubHc appearances 
of Lady Cleveland of which we hear in 1671. She is 
seen at a ballet at Court in February " very fine in a 
riche petticoat and halfe skirte, and a short man's coat 
very richly laced, a perwig cravatt, and a hat : her hat 
and maske was very rich." About the same time also 
she drives in Hyde Park in a coach with eight horses, 
and rumour attributes to her the intention of having 
twelve horses. On March 2nd Evelyn has an interest- 
ing entry. He walks through St. James's Park to the 
Privy Garden, " where I both saw and heard a very 
familiar discourse between [the King] and Mrs. 
Nellie as they called an impudent comedian, she look- 
ing out of her garden on a terrace at the top of the 
wall and [the King] standing on the greene walke 
under it. I was heartily sorry at this scene," continues 
Evelyn. " Thence the King walked to the Duchess 
of Cleveland, another lady of pleasure and curse of 
our nation." It seems to have been impossible for 
Evelyn to mention the lady's name without recording 
his detestation of her, just as Pepys could seldom do 
so without a note of admiration. Yet the two diarists 
were excellent friends ! 

As though to console her for her supersession as a 
political influence, the King was lavishly generous to 
the Duchess of Cleveland in the year 1671. He began 
with a grant in January of Nonsuch House and Park, 
near Epsom — the complement of the lowest of the 
three titles conferred upon her in the previous 



SUPPLANTED 183 

August. Nonsuch House or Palace had been built by- 
Henry Vni as a hunting-box. After it had passed 
temporarily into private hands Elizabeth had pur- 
chased it back for the Crown, and her successors 
had used it as an occasional residence, Charles I having 
taken Henrietta Maria thither after their quarrel over 
his dismissal of her French attendants, and afterwards 
settling it upon her. In spite of the damage done to it 
during the Commonwealth and its use as the office 
of the Exchequer during the period of the Plague in 
London, it had come down to this date in excellent 
preservation. Evelyn, who visited it on January 3rd, 
1666, praises it highly, with its plaster statues and 
bas-reliefs inserted between the timbers and pun- 
cheons of its outer walls, " which must needs have 
been the work of some celebrated Italian " ; its in- 
genious arrangement of slate scales on wood, " the 
slate fastened on the timber in pretty figures, that has, 
like a coate of armour, preserved it from rotting " ; 
and its " mezzo-relievos as big as the life, the storie is 
of the Heathen Gods." As for the grounds, " there 
stands in the garden two handsome stone pyramids, 
and the avenue planted with rows of faire elmes, but 
the rest of these goodly trees . . . were felled by 
those destructive and avaricious rebells in the late 
warr, which defaced one of the stateliest seates His 
Majesty had." Alas ! a worse fate was now to befall 
it. The new owner pulled down the old palace of 
Henry VIII and turned the park into farm-land, in 
order to extract fuller cash-value from her acquisition. 
This grant was made in the names of Viscount 



1 84 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Grandison and of Henry Brounker, a creature of the 
King's, justly called by Pepys " a pestilential rogue." 
A letter survives, written by Charles to Brounker on 
August 25th, in which His Majesty refers to the 
changes at Nonsuch. " The Dutches of Cleaveland," 
he says, " has satisfied me it is both for her advantage 
and those in the reversion that Nonsuch should be 
suddenly disparked, to avoid all sutes and contests 
between her and the Lord Berkeley, and that she 
intends to let it out at a rent which is to be reserved 
to her Grace," &c. 

We hear of enormous money gifts later in the 
year. Writing on August 9th to a friend travelling 
in Persia, Andrew Marvell tells how the House of 
Commons has grown " extreme chargeable to the 
King and odious to the people." Lord St. John, Sir 
Robert Howard, Sir John Bennet, and Sir William 
Bucknell the brewer, all members of the Commons, 
have " farmed the old customs, with the new Act 
of Imposition upon Wines and the Wine Licenses, at 
six hundred thousand pounds a year, and have signed 
and sealed ten thousand pounds a year more to the 
Duchess of Cleveland, who has likewise near ten 
thousand pounds a year out of the new farm of the 
county excise of Beer and Ale ; five thousand pounds 
a year out of the Post Ofhce, and, they say, the re- 
version of all the King's leases, the reversion of all 
places in the Custom House, the Green Wax, and 
what not ! All promotions, spiritual and temporal, 
pass under her cognizance." Near the end of the 
same letter he relates how " Barclay," i.e. Baron 



SUPPLANTED 185 

Berkeley of Stratton, Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland, has 
been compelled to come over to England to pay ten 
thousand pounds rent to his landlady Cleveland." 
What precisely Berkeley is paying rent for is not clear — 
though Berkeley's name is also mentioned in Charles's 
letter above. But we know that some time later the 
Duchess of Cleveland appears as the recipient of 
estates in Ireland sufficient to produce a revenue of 
^1000 a year to compensate her for a promise which 
Charles had made her and not kept. How this came 
about is told by Carte in his Life of the Duke of 
Ormonde. Explaining why the Duchess always did 
Ormonde all the ill offices that were in her power, he 
says : 

" She had obtained of the King a warrant for the 
grant of the Phoenix Park and House near Dublin, 
which was the only place of retirement in the summer 
season for a chief governor ; and the more necessary 
at that time, when His Grace coming over found the 
castle of Dublin so out of repair, and in such a miser- 
able condition, after the neglect of it during the late 
usurpation, that it did not afford him sufficient 
accommodation. The Lord Lieutenant refused to pass 
this warrant, stopped the grant, and prevailed with 
His Majesty to enlarge the park by the purchase of 
four hundred and fifty acres of land adjoining in 
Chapel Izod of the Lord Chancellor Eustace, and to 
fit up the house for the convenience of himself and 
his successors in the government of Ireland. This 
incensed the Lady Castlemaine so highly that upon 
His Grace's return to England, meeting him in one 
of the apartments about Court, she without any 



1 86 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

manner of regard to the place or company, fell upon 
him with a torrent of abusive language, loaded him 
with all the reproaches that the rancour of her heart 
could suggest, or the folly of her tongue could utter, 
and told him in fine that she hoped to live to see him 
hanged. The Duke heard all unmoved, and only made 
her this memorable reply : That he was not in so much 
haste to put an end to her days, for all he wished 
with regard to her was that he might live to see her 
old." 

The Duchess, nevertheless, forgave Ormonde suffi- 
ciently to ask a favour of him many years later, as will 
be seen. 

Marvell, in his above-quoted letter, we may sup- 
pose, is summarising for the benefit of his friend in 
Persia all the Duchess's recent acquisitions, not merely 
those of the year 1671. It is a fact, however, that in 
the following February yet another grant was made 
by the King to Viscount Grandison, Henry Howard, 
and Francis Villiers of a number of manors and ad- 
vowsons in Surrey, two-thirds of which they pro- 
ceeded to declare they would hold in trust for the 
Duchess of Cleveland. 

Even if Marvell's list be a summary to date, there- 
fore, it is plain that the Duchess was in possession of 
enormous resources soon after her acquisition of the 
title. As to the manner in which she dissipated much 
of her wealth there is no doubt. Reckless gambling 
and reckless expenditure on favourites accounted for 
vast sums. Of her gifts to Hart and salary to the rope- 
dancer we have already heard. She added a more 



SUPPLANTED 187 

aristocratic client to her list. The Gramont Memoirs, 
with their usual disregard for dates, place the begin- 
ning of her intrigue with John Churchill in the year 
when the Court visited the West of England — 1663, 
at which time Churchill was but thirteen ! This is 
obviously absurd. That extraordinary person, Mrs. 
Mary de la Riviere Manley, who disputes with Mrs. 
Aphra Behn the palm for feminine literary indelicacy 
in the Restoration era, seems to place it in 1667. But 
Mrs. Manley did not make the acquaintance of the 
Duchess of Cleveland until twenty-six years later, 
indeed was not born for another three years, and she 
is not, therefore, a first-hand authority concerning 
her temporary patroness's doings in 1667. The fact 
that Pepys has no mention at all of John Churchill in 
the Diary is a very strong argument against his 
association with the Duchess previous to May 1669. 
All that we can be certain of, however, is that they 
were acquainted before the end of 1671, since their 
daughter Barbara was born in the July of the following 
year. 

Mrs. Manley in 7he New Atalantis attributes the 
introduction of the young ensign to the royal mistress 
to a chance meeting at Cleveland House. Churchill's 
maternal aunt was " surintendant of the family of the 
Dutchess De PInconsta?tt, Sultana Mistress to Sigis- 
mu7id the Second,^^ and her nephew used to visit his 
aunt and fill himself with sweetmeats. " The Dutchess 
came one day unexpectedly down the back stairs to 
take chair, and found 'em together ; he had slip'd 
away, for fear of anger, but not so speedily but she 



1 88 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

had a glimpse of his graceful person. She ask'd who 
he was ; and being answer'd, she caus'd him to be 
call'd. . . . The Governess, knowing the Dutchess's 
amorous star, was transported at the happy intro- 
duction of her nephew," etc. 

Perhaps this must be dismissed as romance based 
on gossip related to Mrs. Manley after her quarrel 
with the Duchess in 1694. But doubtless the Duchess 
when she first met Churchill was immediately smitten. 
The fourth Lord Chesterfield, writing to his son, 
says that Marlborough's figure was beautiful, his 
manner irresistible by either man or woman. The 
Duchess did not attempt to resist, and the affair was 
soon known to the King. Churchill has been identified 
with the hero of Burnet's story of how an intrigue, 
" by the artifice of the Duke of Buckingham, was 
discovered by the King in person, the party concerned 
leaping out of the window." Charles was indignant, 
as he had been in the case of Jermyn ; not jealous over 
the lady falling in love, but angry at the exhibi- 
tion which she made of it. As will be seen, his desire, 
after he had pensioned her off, was that she should 
make the least noise she could. 

On the present occasion he took no steps to punish 
the offenders. He dismissed Churchill with nothing 
worse than the cynical " I forgive you, for you do it 
for your bread ! " The sting of this was that the 
Duchess of Cleveland had been lavishly generous to the 
young man, whether or not she had at this time already 
presented him with that famous ^5000 which Churchill, 
showing thus early in life the appreciation of the value 



SUPPLANTED 189 

of money which marked him so strongly later, in- 
vested profitably in the pmxhase of an annuity of 
£500 a year. This present from the Duchess was, as 
both Lord Chesterfield and Boyer remark, the founda- 
tion of Churchill's subsequent fortune. His gratitude, 
however, for the lady's generosity was small. Mrs. 
Manley in her Toma7i d clef, The Adventures of Rivella 
relates how " from Hilaria she received the first ill- 
impressions of Count Fortmiatus, touching his ingrati- 
tude, immorality, and avarice ; being herself an eye- 
witness when he deny'd Hilaria (who had given him 
thousands) the common civility of lending her twenty 
guineas at Basset ; which, together with betraying 
his master, and raising himself by his sister's dis- 
honour, she had always esteem'd a just and flaming 
subject for satire." ^ 

In The New Aialantis she describes the same scene 
of the refusal in graphic detail. The Duchess, she 
says, had oftentimes not a pistole at command, 
" solicited the Count (whom she had rais'd) by his favour 
with the Court that her affairs might be put into a 
better posture, but he was deaf to all her intreaties ; 
nay, he carried ingratitude much further ; one night 
at an assembly of the best quality, when the Count 
tallied to them at Basset, the Dutchess lost all her money 
& begged the favour of him, in a very civil manner, 
to lend her twenty pieces ; which he absolutely refused, 
though he had a thousand upon the table before him, 
and told her coldly, the bank never lent any money. 

^ Rivella is Mrs. Manley herself, Hilaria the Duchess of Cleveland, 
Count Fortunatus the Duke of Marlborough, 



190 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Not a person upon the place but blamed him in their 
hearts : as to the Duchess's part, her resentment burst 
out into a bleeding at her nose, and breaking of her 
lace ; without which aid, it is believed, her vexation 
had killed her upon the spot." 

Churchill " could refuse more gracefully than other 
people could grant," says Lord Chesterfield in the 
above-mentioned letter to his son. His refusal of 
the Duchess's request for a loan is scarcely an instance 
of this ! 

To supply Churchill with the ;^50oo without in- 
convenience to herself the Duchess is credited with 
having got double the amount out of the notorious 
spendthrift and rake. Sir Edward Hungerford, who 
founded Hungerford Market some years later on the 
site of his town house, burnt in 1669, and after selling 
the market, like some thirty manors which were once 
his, died in comparative poverty two years after the 
Duchess. This affair with Hungerford explains Pope's 
allusion to the lady 

" Who of ten thousand gulled her Knight, 
Then asked ten thousand for another night ; 
The gallant too, to whom she paid it down, 
Lived to refuse the mistress half-a-crown.'' 

Boyer, in his obituary notice of the Duchess, after 
speaking of her affair with Churchill, says : " I had 
rather draw a Veil over the Life this Lady led from 
henceforward. . . . Indeed it would be too tedious 
to enter upon a Detail of her other Amours." To a 
certain extent we may follow Boyer's discreet example, 
since there is little interest beyond mere curiosity in 



SUPPLANTED 191 

many of the lady's rapidly increasing love-affairs. 
But one calls for attention, since the other person in- 
volved in it was the celebrated dramatist Wycherley, 
who owed not a little of his early success to the 
patronage of Her Grace. Some time in the early spring 
of 1 67 1, it would appear, he had produced at Drury 
Lane Theatre his Love in a Wood, or St. James' s Park, 
his first written and first acted play. The Duchess 
of Cleveland went to a performance, with a result 
which the dramatist could not have anticipated. John 
Dennis, the friend of Wycherley, Congreve, Dryden, 
and other wits, in his Familiar Letters describes what 
happened on the very next day following the Duchess's 
visit to Drury Lane. As Wycherley was going, he 
says, through Pall Mall towards St. James's in his 
chariot, he met the lady in hers. She, thrusting half 
her body out of the chariot, cried out aloud to him, 

" You, Wycherley, you are the son of a ," at the 

same time laughing heartily. Wycherley, we are told, 
was very much surprised, but soon apprehended that 
the allusion was to a song in Love in a Wood, suggesting, 
in language almost as coarse as the Duchess's own, that 
the mothers of great wits had always a bad character. 
The rest may be told in Dennis's words : 

"As during M^ Wycherley's surprise the chariots 
drove different ways, they were soon at a considerable 
distance from each other, when Mr. Wycherley, re- 
covering from his surprise, ordered his coachman to 
drive back and to overtake the lady. As soon as he 
got over against her, he said to her : ' Madam, you 
have been pleased to bestow a title on me which 



192 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

generally belongs to the fortunate. Will your Lady- 
ship be at the play to-night ? ' ' Well,' she reply'd, 
' what if I am there ? ' ' Why, then I will be there 
to wait upon your Ladyship, tho' I disappoint a very 
line woman who has made me an assignation.' ' So,' 
said she, ' you are sure to disappoint a woman who has 
favoured you for one who has not.' ' Yes,' reply'd he, 
* if she who has not favoured me is the finer woman 
of the two. But he who will be constant to your 
Ladyship, till he can find a finer woman, is sure to die 
your captive.' The lady blushed and bade her coach- 
man drive away. ... In short she was that night in 
the first row of the King's box in Drury Lane, and 
M"" Wycherley in the pit under her, where he enter- 
tained her during the whole play." 

Wycherley was a very handsome m.an, as his con- 
temporaries tell us and his portrait by Lely proves, 
and it is not to be wondered at, therefore, that the 
Duchess of Cleveland took a great fancy to him. She 
not only favoured him with her own society but 
introduced him also to Court and King. Wycherley, 
in his turn, when he printed his Love in a Wood, pre- 
faced it with a dedication to " Her Grace the Duchess 
of Cleveland," which is not only important for fixing 
the date of his first play's appearance, but also an 
interesting document in itself, as a few extracts will 
show : 

" Madam," says Wycherley, 

" All authors whatever in their dedication are 
poets ; but I am now to write to a lady who stands as 
little in need of flattery, as her beauty of art ; other- 




From a mezzotint engraving hy I. Smith, after a painting by Sir Peter Lely 

\VILLIA^r WYCHERLEV 



SUPPLANTED 193 

wise I should prove as ill a poet to her in my dedication 
as to my readers in my play. I can do your Grace no 
honour, nor make you more admirers than you have 
already ; yet I can do myself the honour to let the 
world know I am the greatest you have. ... I cannot 
but publicly give your Grace my humble acknowledge- 
ments for the favours I have received from you : this, 
I say, is the poet's gratitude, which, in plain English, 
is only pride and ambition ; and that the world might 
knov/ that your Grace did me the honour to see my 
play twice together. Yet, perhaps, my enviers of 
your favour will suggest 'twas in Lent, and therefore 
for your mortification. Then, as a jealous author, I am 
concerned not to have your Grace's favours lessened, 
or rather my reputation ; and to let them know you 
were pleased, after that, to command a copy from me 
of this play ; — the only way, without beauty and wit, 
to win a poor poet's heart." 

The dedication closes with a panegyric on the lady. 
" You have that perfection of beauty (without think- 
ing it so) which others of your sex but think they have ; 
that generosity in your actions which others of your 
quality have only in their promises ; that spirit, wit 
and judgment, and all other qualifications which fit 
heroes to command and would make any but your 
Grace proud. ... In fine, speaking thus of your 
Grace, I should please all the world but you ; therefore 
I must once observe and obey you against my will, 
and say no more than that I am. Madam, Your Grace's 
most obliged and most humble servant 

" William Wycherley." 

The irregularity of the ex-mistress's life was no 

doubt one of the reasons why the King reduced the 
o 



194 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

amount of his merely friendly acquaintance with her. 
On February 22nd, 1672, we find Charles Lyttelton 
writing to Viscount Hatton that " the King has of 
late forebore visiting my Lady Cle[veland] ; but some 
two days since was with her againe and I suppose will 
continue to goe sometimes, though it may not be 
so often." Again, on March 22nd, " The King goes 
but seldom to Cleveland House." On the other hand, 
according to Lyttelton, " Mdlle. Keerewell is infinitely 
in favour, and, to say truth, she seems as well to 
deserve it, for she is wondrous handsome, and, they 
say, as much witt and addresse as ever anybody had." 
Mdlle. Keerewell, also popularly known as Madam 
Carwell, or Carewell, is, of course, Louise de Keroualle 
whose ascendancy over the King is now established. 
In the previous October Charles had gone to New- 
market for the " autumnal sports " in the company 
of " jolly blades, racing, dauncing, feasting, and 
revelling, more resembling a luxurious and abandoned 
rout than a Christian Court," as Evelyn, who lodged 
first with the surely uncongenial Henry Jermyn and 
then with the Arlingtons at Euston, sadly exclaims. 
The chief sporting event was a race between His 
Majesty's] Woodcock and Tom Eliot's Flatjoot, before 
many thousand spectators. But a more impor- 
tant affair was the presence, as the guest of Lord 
and Lady Arlington, of " the famous new French 
Maid of Honour Mile Querouaille, now coming to be 
in great favour with the King." His Majesty, indeed, 
came to Euston almost every second day and fre- 
quently slept there. Colbert was also a guest at the 



SUPPLANTED 195 

house, and with his benevolent aid, no doubt, matters 
were arranged to Charles's desire. " 'Twas with con- 
fidence believed," Evelyn says, that the lady was 
" first made a misse, as they call these unhappy crea- 
tures, with all solemnity at this time." And in token 
of her shame the Duchess of Cleveland's successor 
on October 19th appeared at the races in the royal 
coach and six. The visit to Newmarket fulfilled 
Colbert's hopes. The King's affections were secured, 
especially when it was known that the baby-faced 
maid of honour was going to present him with a child. 

By a curious coincidence in the same month of 
July 1672 there were born Barbara Palmer, on the i6th, 
and Charles Lennox, on the 29th. The latter was the 
King's son by Louise de Keroualle, the former the 
first of the known offspring of the Duchess of Cleveland 
that was certainly not the King's — being universally 
credited to Churchill. 

The King showed not the slightest displeasure over 
the appearance of the little Barbara. A fortnight 
later he graced with his presence the formal marriage 
of the Duchess's second son Henry to Isabella Bennet, 
only daughter of the Earl of Arlington. This is the 
union so ornately celebrated by Nahum Tate in his 
second part of Absalom and Achitofhel : 

"■ His age with only one mild heiress blest, 
In all the bloom of smiling nature drest ; 
And blest again to see his flower allied 
To David's stock, and made young Othniel's bride." 

Young Othniel, otherwise Henry Fitzroy, was only 
nine, Isabella five, so that the ceremony was rather 



196 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

of the nature of a betrothal and was repeated seven 
years later. Evelyn, who was present as a friend of 
the ArHngtons, " tooke no great joy at the thing for 
many reasons." The bride to him appears now " a 
sweete child if ever there was any," and on a subse- 
quent occasion " worthy for her beauty and virtue 
of the greatest Prince in Christendom." His opinion 
at the time of the second marriage we shall see 
later. 

The presence of the King and " all the grandees," 
as Evelyn records, at the marriage and the officiation 
of the Archbishop of Canterbury show that His 
Majesty had at last determined to recognise Henry 
as his son, especially as on August 15th he conferred 
upon him, *' our second naturall son by ye Lady 
Barbara," &c., the titles of Baron Sudbury, Viscount 
Ipswich, and Earl of Euston ; before his younger 
brother George, whom the King always acknowledged, 
had received such an honour. Henry's wedding, 
too, was celebrated with a splendour that had been 
totally lacking in the case of his elder, Charles Fitzroy. 
In the previous year Charles, aged nine, had been 
contracted to a child bride, Mary Wood, seven years 
of age, daughter of Sir Henry Wood, a clerk of the 
Green Cloth. Possibly the King had not approved 
of so undistinguished an alliance. But the Duchess 
of Cleveland, with her eye on Mary's considerable 
fortune for her son, had obtained forcible and illegal 
possession of the little girl and insisted on an immediate 
marriage and conveyance of the dowry. 

With regard to George, we find a grant of ^^500 



SUPPLANTED 197 

made, in the names of Grandison and Edward Villiers, 
to him and his heirs male. Before the end of the year 
the King had granted all three boys arms, crests, and 
supporters ; and two months later their sisters were 
also furnished with arms. 

Clearly, therefore, to whatever extent the French 
mistress had taken the place of the Duchess of Cleve- 
land, and however annoyed the King was at the latter's 
indiscretions, he had no intention of stopping his 
bounty to her or of shghting their children. That 
this was universally recognised is clear from the alliances 
which these children were able to make, both the sons 
and the daughters. As early as the autumn of 1671 
Lord Howard confided to Evelyn his project of 
marrying his eldest son to one of the daughters of 
the King and Duchess, " by which he reckoned he 
should come into mighty favour." This scheme was 
not carried out. The young lady Anne Palmer came 
back to her mother from Paris in the autumn of the 
following year, escorted by her uncle Grandison, but 
when she married, in 1674, it was a Lennard, not a 
Howard, she took as her husband. 

The year 1672 was associated with death as well as 
marriage. Before its close the Duchess of Cleveland 
lost her grandmother. Dame Barbara Villiers. Pre- 
viously she had lost her mother, but except that it 
occurred later than March 1671 the date of her death 
is unknown. So little is the former Mary Bayning 
heard of that one cannot but suspect that she and 
her daughter were on unfriendly terms during the 
latter's ascendancy over Charles H. She had taken a 



198 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

third husband, Arthur Gorges, and survived him Hke 
the other two. Otherwise her doings are unknown. 

That the grandmother, too, did not die on the best 
of terms with her granddaughter seems probable from 
the smallness of her legacy to her — ^50 with which to 
buy a mourning ring. The old lady may have con- 
sidered that it was not money but respect that the 
Duchess lacked. 



CHAPTER X 
THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 

/^N April 4th, 1672, Evelyn made the following 
entry in his Diary. " I went to see the fop- 
peries of the Papists at Somerset House, and York 
House, where now the French Ambassador had 
caused to be represented our Blessed Saviour at the 
Paschal Supper with his Disciples, in figures and 
puppets made as big as the life, of waxwork, curiously 
clad and sitting round a large table, the roome nobly 
hung, and shining with innumerable lamps and candles : 
this was exposed to all the world, all the City came to 
see it : such liberty had the Roman Catholics at this 
time obtained." 

It is strange to read this when we know that eleven 
months afterwards the Test Act passed the House 
of Lords, whereby all Roman Catholics were de- 
barred from holding any office under the Crown 
or post in the Royal Household. Extreme bitterness 
of feeling in England against Popery had indeed 
begun to make itself felt as early as 1666. The Great 
Fire was attributed variously to the Dutch, the 
French, and the native Roman Catholics, but espe- 
cially to a plot between the two last-named. Out- 
rages against foreigners and Romanists occurred 

before the Fire itself was subdued. To the flourish- 

199 



200 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

ing of the legend two years later the mock answer 
o£ Lady Castlemaine to the libellous petition of 
March 1668 bears witness. But the French alliance, 
followed by a large influx of French visitors into the 
English Court, produced its natural effect, and what 
Marvell twice in his letters calls " the insolence of 
the Papists " — which was little more than the open 
avowal of their beliefs — was constantly on the increase. 
The news of the conversion of the Duchess of 
York before her death in March 1671, coupled with 
the widespread belief that the Duke had also gone 
over already, served to aggravate popular hostility 
toward Rome. So strong had the prejudice grown 
before the end of 1672 that the Protestant members 
of the Cabal extorted the King's most reluctant 
consent to a Test Act. The first result of this was 
that the Duke of York, though not yet a declared 
Roman Catholic, refused to take the required oath 
and laid down all his offices, including that of Lord 
High Admiral, which was dear to him. An instructive 
letter preserved among the collection addressed to 
Sir Joseph Williamson, Keeper of the King's Paper 
Office, while he was acting as plenipotentiary for 
England at the Congress of Cologne in 1673, shows 
what effect this had on the public. " Its not to be 
writt," says Henry Ball, Williamson's chief clerk 
at the Paper Office, " the horrid discourses that 
passes now upon His Royall Highness surrendring ; 
they call him Squire James and say he was alwayes 
a Romanist." A little later Ball declares the talk 
of the town to be as bad against the Duke as ever 



THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 201 

it was against his father in the height of his troubles ; 
and again of the town's " averseness to both France 
and Popery, the latter of which is the generall eccho 
of every place." The remarriage of the Duke to 
Mary Beatrice d'Este (Mary of Modena), " a stiffe 
Roman Catholique," makes things worse than ever. 
Talk is " undecent and extravagent " ; and " never 
did the common streame run swifter against the 
Recusants than now." In the November of the same 
year Charles Hatton writes to his brother of the 
incredible number of bonfires on the 5th, the Pope 
and his cardinals being burnt in ef^gy in Cheapside — 
a fact which is also noticed by Evelyn, and attributed 
by him to displeasure at the Duke for altering his 
religion and marrying an Italian lady. 

One of the sufferers through the Test Act was the 
Duchess of Cleveland, who was compelled to resign 
that post of Lady of the Bedchamber to the Queen 
which had cost such a struggle eleven years before. 
Possibly she did not come in for such obloquy now 
for her religious beliefs as the reigning mistress ; 
it was for Louise de Keroualle, this year created 
Duchess of Portsmouth, that Nell Gwynn was one 
day mistaken as she was driving through the streets 
of London and had to jump out of her coach and 
explain to the " good people," who were proposing 
to mob her, that she was the Protestant mistress. 

The French beauty's patent, making her Duchess 
of Portsmouth, Countess of Farnham, and Baroness 
Petersfield, was ready in July 1673, but there was 
some difficulty about passing it before she was 



202 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

naturalised an English subject. This being sur- 
mounted, there was now a second peeress who owed 
her title solely to her complaisance to the King. 
Rumour would have it that there was going to be 
a third — no other than " Madam Gwynn," who " is 
promised to be Countess o£ Plymouth as soon as 
they can see how the people will relish itt." The 
general public would doubtless have relished it far 
more than they relished the Cleveland and Ports- 
mouth peerages ; but Nell Gwynn got no nearer to 
the ranks of the aristocracy than by the creation of 
her son, Charles Beauclerc, first Earl of Burford 
and then, in 1684, Duke of St. Albans. 

As if to appease the former mistress for the dignity 
about to be conferred upon her successor, the King 
was very prodigal with his grants to the Duchess 
of Cleveland and her children in the first half of 
1673. In January he invested the young Earl of 
Southampton with the Order of the Garter. In 
February he made the already mentioned grant of 
arms to the Fitzroy girls. In April he appointed 
the Earl of Euston Receiver-General and Comptroller 
of the Seals of the Courts of King's Bench and 
Common Pleas. In June there were warrants issued 
for a grant to Viscount Grandison and Edward 
Villiers of moneys arising from rents, etc., in the 
Duchy of Cornwall ; for a free gift of ^5000 to 
Grandison ; and for the reversion of certain manors 
in Huntingdonshire to Grandison and Villiers and 
their heirs — all for the benefit of the Duchess in 
reality. And in July the revenue of the wine licences 



THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 203 

were charged with a pension of ;^55oo a year to Lord 
Grandison for the Duchess of Cleveland's Hfe, and 
after her decease to the Earl of Southampton and 
his heirs male, etc. Finally, in November a letter 
from one Derham to Sir Joseph WilHamson states 
that " there was brought into the House [of Com.mons] 
an account of foure hundred thousand pounds 
given away since last Session, of which the Duchesses 
of Cleavland and Portsmouth had the greatest share." 

The Williamson letters, from which most of these 
details are taken, are extraordinarily informing as 
to the domestic affairs of 1673, the head of the 
Paper Office having taken good care, with the help 
of his correspondents, to keep himself in touch with 
Court news while he was absent from England. 
On July 14th Ball reports that " a pleasant rediculous 
story is this week blazed about, that the King had 
given Nell Gwinn 20,000/., which angrying much 
my Lady Cleaveland and Mademoiselle Carwell, 
they made a supper at Berkshire House, whither she 
being invited was, as they were drinking, suddenly 
almost choaked with a napkin, of which shee was 
since dead ; and this idle thing runs so hott that 
Mr. Philips askt me the truth of it, believing it, 
but I assured him I saw her yester night in the Parke." 

Her Grace of Cleveland, being now outwardly amic- 
able to Her Grace of Portsmouth, was probably 
at the fete mentioned in Ball's letter of July 25th, 
when " the King, Duke, and all the young Lords 
and Ladyes, went up to Barn Elmes, and there in- 
tended to have spent the evening in a ball and supper 



204 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

amongst those shades, the trees to have been en- 
livened with torches, but the report o£ it brought 
such a traine of spectators that they were faine to 
go dance in a barne and sup upon the water ; the 
treate was at the cost of Madamoselle Carowell." ^ 

From another correspondent we learn that " since 
my Lady Dutchesse of Portesmouth's creation few 
nights have escaped without balles ; it falls this night 
to my Lord of Arlington's turne at Goring House, 
where all things will bee very splendid." The French 
Ambassador entertained the King and whole Court 
at Chelsea, the Duke of Monmouth at his residence, 
and so on. The summer season in London this year, 
in fact, was very gay and unusually prolonged, to 
the detriment of the King's health. On October 
loth Ball writes : " Indeed now they lett not his 
sacred person alone neither, but say (and that every 
body) that he has had lately 3 sad fitts of an apoplexy, 
the first whereof tooke him in the Duchesse of Ports- 
mouth's presence, who has since begged he would 
not come to her att nights. On Tuesday, they say, 
he had a 3d fitt in the Privy Garden, so that many 
people are much concerned and have begged His 
Majesty to be adviced by his phisitians, who tell 
him he must a little refraine company, etc." 

Soon after these alarming fits Charles was called 
upon to arbitrate between the Duchess of Cleveland 
and Lord Arlington, who had fallen out concerning 
the upbringing of the Earl of Euston. After the 
marriage of August 1672 the Lord Chamberlain 

^ Yet another Anglicisation of Keroualle. 



THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 205 

wished to have some control of his son-in-law's 
education. He therefore obtained the King's per- 
mission to take him with him to Euston, his Suffolk 
seat, of which Evelyn's Diary has an elaborate de- 
scription. When Henry Fitzroy was created Earl 
of Euston it was understood that he was one day to 
occupy the " palace " there with his bride. But 
the Duchess of Cleveland absolutely refused to 
put the boy under Arlington's charge. " Shee will 
not part with him," says a contemporary letter, 
" nor cares for any education other than what nature 
and herselfe can give him, which will bee sufficient 
accomplishment for a married man." The last 
statement v/e may take to be an echo of the Duchess's 
own words. Whether she gained the day or not does 
not appear. 

For some considerable time now the Duchess's 
name is only heard of in connection with the affairs 
of her children. Two of these, in spite of their 
tender years, were already married. In 1674 two 
more weddings took place, those of Anne, aged 
thirteen, and Charlotte, aged nearly ten. The 
husbands provided for them were Thomas Lennard, 
fifteenth Lord Dacre, soon created Earl of Sussex,^ 
and Edward Henry Lee, just made Earl of Lichfield, 
both of them Gentlemen of the Bedchamber to His 
Majesty. An account survives of the Dacre wedding, 
which took place at Hampton Court on August 2nd. 
From it we learn how Dacre was brought at nine in 

^ His mother was Elizabeth Bayning, a daughter of the first 
Viscount and therefore a sister to Barbara's mother. 



2o6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

the morning to the Duchess's apartments, and found 
the child-bride awaiting him there. A little after 
noon the King arrived from Windsor and led the 
procession from the Duchess's, through the Gallery, 
to the ante-camera of his own bedchamber. Charles 
walked first, holding the bride's hand ; next came the 
bridegroom, next the Duke of York and the Duchess 
of Cleveland, and then Prince Rupert, followed hy 
the ladies of the two contracting families. The 
ceremony was performed by the Bishop of Oxford, 
in the presence of those already named, together 
with the Duke of Monmouth, "Don Carlos " — 
Charles's natural son by Catherine Peg, now Lady 
Green, who died at Tangier five years later — the 
Earls of Suftolk (as Barbara's uncle by marriage), Ar- 
lington, Danby, and the Lord Keeper Finch. The 
service being over, the King kissed the bride, and 
" by and by the bride-cake was broken over her head " 
— a proceeding which doubtless sounds more alarming 
than in reality it was. Finally there was a dinner 
in the Presence Chamber, at which the King had 
the bride on his right and her mother on his left. 
Soon after the wedding the little Countess was 
assigned rooms in Whitehall Palace, the same suite 
which had once been her mother's. 

There is no similar account of Charlotte Fitzroy's 
wedding with the Earl of Lichfield, and owing to her 
very tender age this daughter was kept by her mother 
to live with her for several years more. The King, 
however, provided for both girls with great generosity, 
giving a dowry of _^20,ooo with Anne and one of 



THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 207 

^18,000 with Charlotte, and allowing their husbands 
a pension of £2000 a year each. He was also called 
upon to pay, ten years later, some large sums in- 
curred for the wedding trousseaus by the Duchess of 
Cleveland. Among the Secret Services of Charles II 
and James II in 1684-5 occur a number of entries, of 
which the following, on July 19th, and December 
1 2th, 1684, are typical : 

" To Richard Bokenham, in full, for 
several parcells of gold and silver 
lace, bought of W™ Gostling and 
partners on 2nd May 1674 by the 
Dutchess of Cleavland, for the 
wedding cloaths of the Lady Sussex 
and Lichfield 646/. Sj. 6dy 

" To John Dodsworth, husband of 
Katherine Dodsworth, al's Eaton, 
adm'' of the goods and chattels of 
John Eaton, unadministred, in part 
of 1,082/. 8j. lod. for lace and other 
things bought of the said John 
Eaton, for the wedding cloaths of 
the Ladys Litchfield and Sussex by 
the Dutchess of Cleaveland . . 182/. os. o^," 

The entries prove that Charles ultimately paid at 
least ;£i599 ^^^- °^- against nearly ^^3000 claimed 
against the Duchess by five creditors in connection with 
the Dacre and Lichfield weddings. Her Grace had 
as usual left her bills unpaid. 

The flow of Charles's generosity to the Duchess and 
her children continued unabated by his establishment 



2o8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

of a new mistress or by her own flagrant indiscretions. 
In October he made her a grant, in the names of her 
uncles Grandison and Edward Villiers, as so often 
before, of ^^6000 a year from the excise revenues, with 
remainder to her sons ; made grants from the same 
source of ;£^3000 a year to each of these and their heirs 
male ; and raised to the peerage the only untitled one 
of them, the eight-year-old George, whom he created 
Baron Pontefract, Viscount Falmouth, and Earl of 
Northumberland. In the September of next year he 
promoted Charles and Henry to the rank of Dukes, 
of Southampton and Grafton respectively ; a counter- 
poise to his creation of the reigning mistress's son 
Duke of Richmond and Lennox in August. 

Barbara had therefore among her children two 
Dukes, an Earl, and two Countesses, all handsomely 
provided for. Only her namesake, the infant Barbara, 
reputed daughter of John Churchill, was without a 
token of the Royal bounty ; and, boldly grasping as 
Lady Cleveland was, perhaps even she could scarcely 
demand that the King should provide for this witness 
to her infidelity as a mistress. 

To the Duchess's views on the proper education for 
her children we have already had an allusion in connec- 
tion with Henry Fitzroy. Some interesting light on 
her desires about her other two sons is shed by a 
letter written on September 17th, 1674, ^7 Humphrey 
Prideaux, at that time tutor of Christ Church, Oxford, 
and afterwards Dean of Norwich, to his friend John 
Elhs. Ellis was credited with being a lover of the 
Duchess somewhere about this time. But the worthy 



THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 209 

Prideaux certainly shows no sign of being aware of 
the fact in his letters. 

" Tuesday night," writes Prideaux, " the Dutchesse 
of Cleveland lodged here in town, and sent for M"^ 
Dean to her lodgings, whom she treated with much 
civility, and desired him to take her son into his care, 
whom she will send here next weeke, and leave the 
whole disposal of him to M"^ Dean, as for the appoint- 
ing of his tutors, lodgeing, allowance, and all other 
things whatsoever. Her third son was with her, who 
beeing, she told M'' Dean, born in Oxford among the 
schollars, shall live some considerable time among 
them, especially since he is far more apt to receive 
instructions than his elder brother, whom she con- 
fesseth to be a very kockish idle boy. The morneing 
before she went she sate at least an hour in her coach, 
that every body might se her." 

" Mr. Dean " is the celebrated Dr. John Fell, whose 
death, as bishop of Oxford in 1686, Evelyn declared to 
be " an extraordinary losse to the poore church at this 
time." As on the occasions of her former visits, so 
now Barbara does not seem to have impressed the 
scholars favourably, in spite of her honeyed Vvords. 
But Mr. Dean accepted the charge of the " kockish 
idle boy," Charles, Earl, and soon to be Duke, of 
Southampton — a married man of the mature age of 
fourteen, it should be remembered. It was arranged 
that before he came into residence he should travel 
abroad for a while. A tutor was selected for him in the 
person of Edward Bernard, scholar of St. John's College, 
with whom he set out for the Continent in the follow- 



2IO MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

ing spring. How little to his taste Bernard found his 
job can be gathered in a letter from Prideaux to Ellis 
in February 1677. " My friend Mr. Bernard, who 
went into France to attend upon the two bastards of 
Cleveland, hath been soe affronted and abused there 
by that insolent woman that he hath been forced to 
quit that imployment and return." 

Bernard apparently undertook the tuition of George 
as well as Charles Fitzroy. The latter came up to 
Oxford in the winter term of 1675. " Harry Aldrich 
is to be his tutor," writes Prideaux ; " what he will 
get by him I know not. It is the generall desire among 
us that he come not." A year later he confirms his un- 
favourable expectations about the young Duke. He 
" is kept very orderly, but will ever be very simple, 
and scarce, I believe, ever attain to the reputation of 
not beeing a fool." We shall see that Mrs. Manley, 
when she met the Duke about eighteen years later, 
found the Oxford tutor's prediction fulfilled. 

In making arrangements for the guardianship of her 
sons, the Duchess of Cleveland had no doubt in mind 
her often discussed withdrawal from England into 
France. Owing partly to the fact that it was now on 
Portsmouth rather than on Cleveland that the un- 
friendly public gaze was turned, and partly to the 
comparative dearth of letters furnishing us with 
intimate Court news in 1675-6, we are without pre- 
cise information about the exact circumstances which 
led to the deposed mistress's retirement nine years 
after the idea of her going was first suggested. There 
is no reason for connecting her departure with the 



THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 211 

arrival in England of another celebrated beauty at the 
end of 1675, although the coincidence is remarkable 
in view of the intimate association of the new-comer''s 
name with those of the Duchesses of Castlemaine and 
Portsmouth at the end of King Charles's life. Un- 
doubtedly there was a plot in connection with the 
introduction to Whitehall of Hortense Mancini, 
Duchess of Mazarin ; but it was directed against the 
reigning mistress, not against her discarded rival, 
whose influence was now no longer feared except in 
so far as she was still able to extract money from the 
Privy Purse. Portsmouth, on the other hand, had 
been able to compass the ruin of the once all-powerful 
Duke of Buckingham, whose influence over the King, 
his cousin had never managed to impair seriously ; 
and the other leaders of the Cabal were on the look- 
out for a means of striking at her supremacy when an 
instrument presented itself to them, which may have 
looked heaven-sent, but was probably discovered by 
the diabolical Ralph Montagu. 

In the last month of 1675, Hortense Mancini 
crossed the Channel. Cardinal Mazarin's third and 
perhaps most beautiful niece was not unknown to 
Charles. When she was but ten years old and he was 
still only a king in exile he had been an unsuccessful 
suitor for her hand. Now at the age of twenty-nine, 
married for fifteen years to a pious husband whom she 
found most uncongenial and enriched by her uncle's 
will with an enormous fortune of over a million and a 
half pounds, after wandering about Europe and in- 
dulging in the wildest exploits she came to England 



212 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

to escape her husband's society and doubtless also 
with other intentions. Being aunt to the young 
Duchess of York, she was welcomed at Court, and 
apartments were assigned to her at St. James's Palace. 
She was soon the talk of the day. On April 25 th, 1676, 
we find Charles Hatton writing to his brother : " The 
Dutchesse of Portsmouth is not well : her sicknesse, 
it is said, is encreased at somebody's visiting the 
Dutchesse Mazarine at my Lady Harvey's house." 
For the second time my Lady Harvey shows her friend- 
ship for " somebody " when the bounds of Whitehall 
are all too narrow for the prosecution of his affairs. 

In September Evelyn sups at the Lord Chamberlain's, 
where he meets " the famous beauty and errant lady the 
Dutchesse of Mazarine," the Duke of Monmouth, and 
the Countess of Sussex. From other sources we know- 
that the brilliant French beauty had quite won the 
heart of the thirteen-year-old Countess, to the discon- 
tent of her husband, who took steps to put an end to 
acquaintance. A letter written by Lady Chaworth 
on November 2nd of the same year, speaking of Lady 
Sussex, reports : " They say her husband and she will 
part unless she leave the Court and be content to live 
to him in the country, he disliking her much converse 
with Madam Mazarine and the addresses she gets in 
that company." Lord Sussex did not at once take 
her away from Whitehall, for we hear at the end of 
December how " she and Madam Mazarine have 
privately learnt to fence, and went downe into St. 
James's Park the other day with drawne swords under 
their night gownes, which they drew out and made 



THE PORTSMOUTH SUPREMACY 213 

several fine passes, much to the admiration of severall 
men that was lookers-on in the Parke." A few weeks 
later, however, the Countess is at her husband's country- 
seat. Here, after a brief illness, she recovers and, 
writes Lady Cha worth, is " mightily pleased with 
fox-hunting and hare-hunting, but kisses Madame 
Mazarine's picture with much affection still." 

Little more than a year later Anne was to cause her 
mother most furious pangs of jealousy, which showed 
that Lord Sussex's fears of the bad effects of the 
addresses of the flighty young girl got in the Duchess 
of Mazarin's company were not unfounded. But for 
the present my Lady Cleveland was removed from 
her daughter's neighbourhood. At some time in 1676 
she had at last betaken herself to Paris. ^ A letter 
written by Lord Berkeley in Paris on April 8th of that 
year mentions her as looking out for a monastery in 
which to live during her stay there. 

" Fair beauties of Whitehall, give way, 
Hortensia does her charms display," 

wrote St. Evremond, the Duchess Mazarin's devoted 
admirer, who after her death could never hear her 
name mentioned without tears. The Duchess of 
Cleveland, in seeming anticipation of St. Evremond's 
advice (for he wrote these lines in a funeral panegyric 
upon his idol in 1699), had departed from a country 
where no further triumphs appeared within her power. 

^ A letter from Lady Chaworth to Lord Roos, dated simply May 4, 
has been assigned to this year. Lady Chaworth writes : " Lady 
Cleaveland is not, they say, much satisfied in France because the 
greatest ladies doe not visit her." 



w^ 



CHAPTER XI 

THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 

'ITH her removal to Paris, the Duchess of 
Cleveland entered upon what was to prove a 
very stormy period in her life. By quitting England 
she doubtless relieved King Charles's mind of the 
apprehensions which he always had of a sudden out- 
burst of his former mistress's temper ; but it was not 
very long before he discovered that the Channel was 
powerless to quench the flames of her rage. For the 
present, however, he was thankful and, as if in proof 
of his gratitude, made a new grant to her of the offices 
of Chief Steward of Hampton Court and Keeper of 
the Chace. This sounds a very inappropriate gift, 
but in those days, when offices were every day sold 
with the King's permission, and had a certain market 
value, it promised her a good revenue, which was 
secured to her for her Hfetime and after her death 
to her third son, the Earl of Northumberland. 

That she was in possession of ample funds, even in 
spite of her extravagant ideas about the spending of 
money, is shown by her handsome gift now of a 
thousand pounds to the English nuns of the Convent 
of the Immaculate Conception of our Blessed Lady 
to help them to build a new chapel. This appears to 
be her only recorded present for a religious purpose, 

214 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 215 

but she was on excellent terms with the dignitaries 
of the Church in France ; on too good terms, according 
to the scandalous insinuation o£ Humphrey Prideaux. 
In a letter of which we have already quoted part above, 
Prideaux writes to John Ellis on February 2nd, 1677, 
that the " Dutchess driveth a cunneing trade and 
followeth her old imployment very hard there, 
especially with the Arch Bishop of Paris, who is her 
principal gallant." The Archbishop in question was 
Francois de Harlay de Champvalon, a man who, dis- 
appointed of his ambitions of becoming a Mazarin, 
was declared by his critics to be better with precept 
than with example where holiness of life was con- 
cerned. Madame de Sevigne in more than one letter 
attacks Harlay's private life. There may therefore 
have been some ground for Prideaux's insinuation. 
As a matter of fact, as will be seen, the Duchess, 
having rather unsuccessfully invoked his aid in a diffi- 
cult matter later on, in her anger gave none too good 
a character of him to Charles II. 

Lady Cleveland seems to have taken two of her 
daughters with her to Paris. Barbara, who was still 
little more than an infant, she placed with the English 
nuns who have been already mentioned. As for 
Charlotte, in February 1677, at the age of twelve 
and a half, she was remarried to the Earl of Lichfield 
and, in defiance of the traditions of her family, made 
him a good wife. A favourite alike with her father 
and with her uncle James, she seems to have deserved 
affection. She was fortunate in being so early removed 
from her mother's care. 



2i6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

In place of Charlotte the Duchess of Cleveland 
before long had the society of Anne, the perplexed 
Earl of Sussex having perhaps, in despair of managing 
his young wife, handed her over to her mother's 
charge. In December 1677 Lady Chaworth writes 
to her brother that the Duchess has put her daughter 
into a religious house, and " she means certainly to 
come hither in the spring to either ajust things better 
between her and her lord, or get his consent that her 
daughter may go into orders." 

While awaiting the arrival of spring, the Duchess 
settled down in Paris to amuse herself. This never 
proved a difficult task to her. To assist her she found 
the English Ambassador, Ralph Montagu, brother of 
the lady with whom she had once had so violent a 
quarrel. Montagu bore her no grudge for the outrage 
against his sister seven years ago. Well described by 
Swift as being " as arrant a knave as any in his time," he 
crowned a chequered and treacherous career by being 
made an Earl by William of Orange, a Duke by Anne. 
His success in obtaining the Paris ambassadorship from 
Charles II was somewhat of a mystery to his con- 
temporaries at Court, but Lord Dartmouth furnishes 
an explanation. " Montagu," he says, " told Sir 
William Temple he designed to go Ambassador to 
France. Sir William asked him how that could be, 
for he knew the King did not love him, and the Duke 
[of York] hated him. ' That's true,' said he, ' but 
they shall do as if they loved me.' Which, Sir WilHam 
told, he soon brought about, as he supposed by means 
of the ladies, who were always his best friends for 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 217 

some perfections that were hid from the rest of the 
world." 

For all we know, Lady Castlemaine may have been 
one of the ladies who helped Montagu to his post in 
Paris in 1669. Their acquaintance was now soon very- 
intimate, as all the world noticed and as is shown by 
two short messages written by her to him and still 
preserved. They run as follows, the original spelling 
being retained : ^ 

" friday. before I reseued yours I was in expectation 
of seing you to daye, but the ocation that hinders your 
comming I am extremly sorry for, being realy and 
kindly consarned for you and all that relats to you. 
I doe ashuer you I am as much afflicted for your garls 
ilnes as if she ware my one, and shall be as unease 

^ The fearful spelling seems to prove that Lord Chesterfield, as has 
been suggested above, when he transcribed Barbara Villiers's youthful 
love-letters in his celebrated collection, revised the orthography. For 
had Barbara at fifteen spelt so well as she is made to in those letters 
she could surely not have spelt quite so badly at the age of thirty-seven. 
But the mere fact that she should make such gross errors is not sur- 
prising. The ladies of the day were truly astonishing in this respect ; 
not only the English ladies, but the French also. See, for instance, a 
letter from the Duchess of Portsmouth to Henry Sidney on March 
8th, 1689 (quoted in Letters to Sir Joseph Williamson, II, 19). Nor 
were many of the gentlemen much better. There survives a 
humorous letter to Williamson by Sir Nicholas Armorer in October 
1673, of which one sentence runs : "This weeke is arrived your good 
frinde Mauris Justace [Maurice Eustace], to the great joye of Miss 
Lockett, and I thinke off few els off our nation, that knows his late 
proceedings ; for take him for what you pleasse heare, I know what 
hee is on the other side of the watter ; hce has beene too coning for 
himselfe, and the Dutches of Cleveland will be too hard for him." It 
was a rare accomplishment to be able to spell in one's own language or 
to speak another. Cominges, French Ambassador at Whitehall, never 
knew a word of English. 



21 8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

till I heare she is better ; I was yesterdaye at Paris, 
but not hauing the Pleausher of seing you thar mayd 
me dislik it more then euer." 

" tusday. I will yeld the disscret part to you thoue 
not the other for notwithstanding the but, I doe 
ashuer you the ten days will be more griuos to me 
then to you." 

The affair proceeded very smoothly for some time, 
during which Montagu, if v/hat the lady says after 
the quarrel is to be believed, made her the confidante 
of his nefarious schemes and his contemptuous opinions 
of the King and the Duke of York. Then the Duchess 
aroused her lover's jealousy. The first Gentleman of 
the Chamber to Louis XIV was a certain Alexis Henry, 
Marquis de Chastillon or Chatillon, who is described 
to Lord Hatton by his sister as a person of quality, 
young and handsome, but with no estate. This young 
man was attracted by the Duchess, or she by him, and 
Montagu became aware of the intrigue. It seems 
probable that he gave information of it to White- 
hall even before he, by some means, got possession of 
the compromising letters from the lady of which we 
shall hear below. Now in the spring of 1678 the 
Duchess paid her intended visit to England, leav- 
ing her daughter Anne in a nunnery at Con- 
flans, where also was the country-seat of the Arch- 
bishop, near, but outside the walls of, Paris. She 
parted on friendly terms with Montagu, not being 
aware yet of his betrayal of her intrigue with Chatillon; 
while he, on his part, was supremely unconscious of 
the pit he was digging for himself. This is evident 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 219 

from a letter which he wrote from Paris, some time 
in May, to one of his very numerous cousins, Henry 
Sidney, afterwards Earl of Romney. " I am glad to 
hear my Lady Cleveland looked so well," said Montagu. 
" I do not wonder at it. I will always lay on her side 
against everybody. I am a little scandalised you have 
been but once to see her — pray make your court of tener 
for my sake, for no man can be more obliged to another 
than I am to her on all occasions, and tell her I say 
so, and, as my Lord Berkeley says, give her a pat 
from me. If you keep your word to come in June, I 
fancy you will come together, and I shall not be ill 
pleased to see the two people in the world of both 
sexes I love and esteem the most." 

Who could have been more unsuspicious of ruin 
than the Ambassador at this moment ? His eyes were 
very soon opened. The Duchess returned to Paris 
earlier than she was expected, indeed before the end 
of May, but with no " pat " for Montagu. On the 
contrary, she dealt him the hardest blow he had ever 
received. In a letter dated July 17th, 1678, Mary 
Hatton, who was living in a nunnery in Paris, wrote to 
her brother : 

" What I have to acquaint you withall of Paris news 
is our cosin Montagues being gon last Monday post 
towards Ingland, opon my Lord Sunderland's being 
sent hither ambassador, which bussness they say my 
Lady Cleavland has intrigued, out of revenge to the 
ambass. for being soe jealous of her for one Chevalier 
Chatillon as to wright it wheire he thought it might 
doe her most prejudice, which she being advertised of. 



220 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

and attributing to it the cold reception she found when 
she was laitly in Ingland, has, as they say, acussed him 
of not being faithfull to his master in the imployment 
he gave him here ; to which there is another par- 
ticular that dus much agravate her, and that is that, 
whillest she was in Ingland, the ambas. was every day 
with her daughter Sussex, which has ocationed such 
jealousy of all sides that, for the saifty of my Lady 
Sussex, it is reported the ambass. advised her to a 
nunnery, and made choice of Belle Chase for her, 
where she is at present and will not see her mother." 

Another letter to Lord Hatton, from his brother 
Charles, shows that Montagu had reached London 
before July nth to vindicate himself against accusa- 
tions brought against him by the Duchesses of Ports- 
mouth and Cleveland, from which it looks as if Her 
Grace of Cleveland in her fury condescended to make 
common cause with her supplanter. But we will now 
let Barbara speak for herself. 

Two extremely long letters addressed by her to 
Charles after her return to Paris have survived the 
destruction of time and are preserved, the first among 
the Harleian MSS., the second among the British 
Museum Additional MSS. Both are so extraordinary 
and give so vivid a picture of the writer's mind that 
it seems impossible to mutilate or paraphrase them. 
With a hope, therefore, that the reader will display 
sufficient patience to digest them as they stand, we 
give them in their entirety. It may assuredly be said 
that there is not their like in the correspondence of 
kings. 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 221 

The first, which is dated " Paris, Tuesday 28 78," 
i.e. May 28th, 1678, must have been sent off almost im- 
mediately after the Duchess's arrival, as soon as she 
discovered Montagu's capture of her letters to Chatil- 
lon (at least one of which was obviously written by her 
when on her visit to England), and runs as follows : 

" I was never so surprized in my hoUe life-time, as 
I was at my comming hither, to find my Lady Sussex 
gone from my house & monestrey where I left her, 
and this letter from her, which I here send you the 
copy of. I never in my holle lifetime heard of suche 
government of herself as She has had, since I went 
into England. She has never been in the monestrey 
two dales together, but every day gone out with the 
embassador ; and has often layen four dales together 
at my house, & sent for her meat to the Embassador, 
he being allwaies with her till five a'clock in y^ morn- 
ing, they two shut up together alone, and w^ not let 
my maistre d'hostel wait, nor any of my servants, 
onely the Embassadors. This has made so great a noise 
at Paris, that she is now the holle discours. I am so 
much afiiicted that I can hardly write this for crying, 
to see that a child that I doated on as I did on her, 
sh«* make so ill a return, & join with the worst of men 
to ruin me. For sure never any malice was like the 
Embassador's, that onely because I w^ not answer to 
his Love, & the importunities he made to me, was 
resolv'd to ruin me. I hope y^ majesty will yet have 
that justice & consideration for me, that tho I have 
done a foolish action, you will not let me be ruined 
by y« most abominable man. I do confess to you 
that I did write a foolish letter to the Chevalier de 
Chatilion, w^^ letter I sent enclosed to Madam de 



222 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Pallas, and sent hers in a Packet I sent to Lady Sussex 
by Sir Henry Tychborn ; w^^ letter she has either 
given to y^ embassador, or else he had it by his man, 
to whom Sir Harry Tychborn gave it to, not finding 
my Lady Sussex. But as yet I doe not know w^^ of the 
waies he had it, but I shall know as I have spoke w^'^ 
Sir Harry Tychborn. But the letter he has, and I 
doubt not but that he either has or will send it to 
you. Now all I have to say for myself is, that you 
know, as to love, one is not mistriss of one's self, & 
that you ought not to be offended w**^ me, since all 
things of ys nature is at an end w*^ you and I ; so that 
I could do you no prejudice. Nor will you, I hope, 
follow the advice of y^ ill man, who in his hart, I know, 
hates you, & were it for his interest w^ ruine you too 
if he could. For he has neither conscience nor honour, 
and has several times told me, that in his hart he 
despised you and y^ Brother ; and that for his part, 
he wished w^^ all his hart that the Parliament w'' send 
you both to travell, for you were a dull governable 
Fool, and the Duke a willfuU Fool. So that it was yet 
better to have you than him, but that you allwaies 
chose a greater beast than y^self to govern you. And 
w° I was come over, he brought me two letters to 
bring to you, w'^^ he read both to me before he seal'd 
them. The one was a man's, that he sayd you had 
great faith in, for that he had several times foretold 
things to you that were of consequence, and that you 
believed him in all things, like a changeling as you 
were. And that now he had writ you word, that in a 
few months the King of France, or his son, were 
threatned w"^ death, or at least a great fit of sickness, 
in w'^^ they w^ be in great danger, if they did not dye ; 
and that therefore he counsell'd you to defer any 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 223 

resolutions of war or peace till some months were 
past ; for that, if this happen'd, it w"^ make a great 
change in France. The Embassador, after he had 
read this to me, sayd, ' Now the good of this is,' says 
he, ' that I can do w* I will w^^ this man ; for he is 
poor, & a good summe of money will make him write 
w^ever I will.' So he proposed to me that he & I 
should join together in the ruining my Ld Treasurer 
and the Dutchess of Portsmouth, which might be done 
thus. The man, tho he was infirm and ill, sh*^ go 
into England, and there, after having been a little 
time, to sollicite you for money ; for that you were 
so base, that tho you employd him, you let him 
starve. So that he was obliged to give him 50 11., & 
that the man had writ several times to you for money. 
O, says he, w^^ he is in England, he shall tell the 
King things that he foresees will infallibly ruin him ; 
& so wish those to be removed, as having an ill star, 
that w*^ be unfortunate to you if they were not 
removed : but if that were done, he was confident 
you would have the gloriousest reign that ever was. 
This, says he, I am sure I can order so, as to bring to 
a good efi^ect, if you will. And in the mean time, 
I will try to get Secretary Coventry's Place, w''^ he 
had a mind to part with, but not to Sir Will"" Temple, 
because he is the Treasurer's creature, and he hates 
the Treasurer ; and I have already employ'd my sister 
to talk w**^ M"" Cook, and to send him to engage M'" 
Coventry not to part with it as yet, and he has assured 
my Lady Harvey he will not. And my L'^ Treasurer's 
lady and M"" Bertie are both of them desirous I sh<^ 
have it. And vv"^ I have it, I will be damn'd if I do 
not quickly get to be Lord Treasurer ; and then you 
& y^ children shall find such a friend as never was. 



224 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

And for the King, I will find a way to furnish him so 
easily with money for his pocket & his wenches, that 
we will quickly out Bab. May, & lead the King by the 
nose.' So when I had heard him out, I told him I 
thank'd him, but that I w^ not meddle in any such 
thing ; and that, for my part, I had no malice to my 
Lady Portsmouth, or the Treasurer, and therefore I 
would never be in any Plot to destroy them, but that 
I found the character the world gave of him was true ; 
which was, that the Devil was not more designing than 
he was. And that I wonder'd at it ; for that sure all 
these things working in his brains must make him 
very uneasy, and w*^ at last make him mad. 'Tis 
possible you may think I say all this out of malice. 
'Tis true he has urged me beyond all patience ; but 
what I tell you here is most true ; & I will take the 
Sacrament of it when ever you please. 'Tis certain I 
would not have been so base as to have informed 
against him for what he sayd before me, had he not 
provoked me to it in this violent way that he has. 
There is no ill thing that he has not done me, and 
that without any provocation of mine, but that I 
would not love him. Now, as to what relates to my 
Daughter Sussex, & her behaviour to me, I must con- 
fess that afflicts me beyond expression, & will do much 
more, if what she has done be by your orders. For 
tho I have an intire submission to your will, and will 
not complain whatever you inflict upon me, yet I 
cannot think you would have brought things to this 
extremity with me, & not have it in your nature ever 
to do no cruel things to any thing living. I hope 
therefore you will not begin with me ; and if the 
Embassador has not rec** his orders from you, that 
you will severely reprehend him for this inhumane 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 225 

proceeding. Besides, he has done what you ought to 
be very angry with him for ; for he has been with the 
King of France, & told him that he had intercepted 
Letters of mine by your order, who had been informed 
that there was a kindness between me and the Chevalier 
de Chatilion, & therefore you bid him take a course in 
it, & stop my Letters ; which accordingly he has done. 
And that upon this you order'd him to take my 
children from me, & to remove my Lady Sussex to 
another monastery. And that you were resolved to 
stop all my Pensions, & never have any regard to me 
in any thing. And that if he w^ oblige your Majesty, 
he sh<* forbid the Chevalier de Chatilion ever seeing 
me, upon the displeasure of losing his Place, & being 
forbid the Court ; for that he was sure you expected 
this from him. Upon which the King told him that 
he could not do anything of this nature, for that 
this was a private matter, & not for him to take notice 
of. And that he could not imagine that you ought to 
be so angry, or indeed be at all concerned ; for that 
all the World knew, that now all things of Gallantry 
were at an end with you and I ; that being so, & so 
publick, he did not see why you sh^ be offended at my 
Loveing any body. That it was a thing so common 
nowadays to have a Gallantry, that he did not wonder 
at any thing of this nature. And when he saw the 
King take the thing thus, he told him that if he w<^ not 
be severe to the Chevalier de Chatilion upon your 
account, he supposed he would be so upon his own, for 
that in the letters he had discoverd, he found that the 
Chevalier had proposed to me the engageing of you in 
the mariage of the Dauphin and Madamoselle,^ and 

^ Marie-Louise, daughter of the Duke of Orleans, and therefore 
niece to Charles IL 

Q 



226 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

that was my greatest busyness in England. That 
before I went over, I had spoke to him of the thing & 
would have ingaged him in it ; but that he refused it, 
for that he knew very well the indifference you had 
whether it were or no, & how little you cared how 
Madamemoselle was married. That since I went into 
England 'twas possible I might engage somebody or 
other in this matter to press it to you, but that he 
knew very well, that in your hart you cared not whether 
it was or no, that this busyness setting on foot by the 
ChevaHer. Upon which the King told him, that if he 
w^ shew him any Letters of the Chevalier de Chatillon 
to that purpose, he sh^ then know what he had to say 
to him ; but that till he saw those Letters, he w'J not 
punish him without a proof for what he did. Upon 
which the Embassador shewd a letter, which he pre- 
tended one part of it was a Double Entendre. The King 
said he c^ not see that there was any thing relating to 
it, & so left him, & said to a Person that was there, 
' Sure the Embassador was the worst man that ever 
was, for because my Lady Cleveland will not love 
him, he strives to ruine her the basest in the world, 
and would have me sacrifice the Chevalier de Chatillon 
to his revenge, which I shall not do till I see better 
proofs of his having medled with the marriage of the 
Dauphin and Madamoselle than any yet that the 
Embassador has shewed me.' This, methinks, is what 
you cannot but be offended at, and I hope you will 
be offended with him for his whole proceeding to 
me, & let the world see that you will never counte- 
nance the actions of so base & ill a man. I had forgot 
to tell you, that he told the King of France, that 
many people had reported that he made love to me, 
but that there was nothing of it, for he had too much 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 227 

respect for you to think of any such thing. As for 
my Lady Sussex, I hope you will think fit to send for 
her over, for she is now mightily discours'd of for the 
Embassador, If you will not believe me in this, make 
inquiry into the thing, & you will finde it to be true. 
I have desired M^ Kemble to give you this letter, & 
to discourse with you more at large upon this matter, 
to know your resolution, & whether I may expect that 
justice & Goodness from you which all the world does. 
I promise you, that for my conduct it shall be such, 
as that you nor nobody shall have occasion to blame 
me ; and I hope you will be just to what you said to 
me, which was at my House, when you told me you 
had letters of mine ; you said, ' Madam, all that I 
ask of you, for your own sake, is, live so for the future 
as to make the least noise you can, & I care not who 
you love.' Oh ! this noise that is, had never been, 
had it not been for the Embassador's malice. I cannot 
forbear once again saying, I hope you will not gratify 
his malice in my ruine." 

Before we give the second letter, it is advisable 
to explain the allusion in the first to the man whom 
Charles " had great faith in." According to Burnet, 
" the King had ordered Montagu ... to find out 
an astrologer, of whom it was no wonder he had 
a good opinion, for he had long before his restoration 
foretold that he should enter London on the 29th of 
May, 1660. He was yet alive, and Montagu found him 
out, and saw that he was capable of being corrupted, 
so he resolved to prompt him to send the King 
such hints as could serve his own ends ; and he was 
so bewitched with the Duchess of Cleveland that 
he trusted her with this secret. She, growing jealous 



228 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

of a new amour, took all the ways she could to ruin 
him, reserving this of the astrologer for her last 
shift ; and by it she compassed her ends. For Mon- 
tagu was entirely lost upon it with the King, and 
came over without being recalled." 

Certainly the letter of May 28th was well calculated 
to inflame the mind of Charles II against a man 
whom already he did not love, when he heard him- 
self described by him as " a changeling " (!) and 
" a dull governable fool," who always chose a greater 
fool than himself to govern him. How satisfactory 
to the wrathful Duchess was his reply to her demands 
can be gathered from her second letter, dated " Paris, 
friday 3 a clocke in the afternoun " : 

" I rescued your Ma*^ letter last night with more 
joy then I can expres, for this prosiding of yours is 
so jenoros and obliging that I must be the werst 
wooman alive ware I not sensible ; no S'^ my hart and 
soule is toucht with this genoriste of yours and 
you shall allways find that my conduct to the world 
and behavior to your childeren shall allways render 
me worthy of your protecktion and favor, this pray 
be confydent of ; I did this morning send your 
letter to my Lady Sussex by my Jentleman of the 
hors who when he cam to the grat asket for her : 
her wooman cam and told him her lady was aslep : 
he sayd he would stay till she was awake, for that he 
had a letter to give into her owne hands from the 
King and that he would not deliver it but to her 
self : her wooman went into her and stayd above 
half an hower, which I beleve was whilest she sent 
to the Embasodor, for he cam in as Lachosse was thar : 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 229 

her wooman cam owet and sayd that her lady had 
binne ill to days and had conultion fits and knue 
nobody : upon which Lachosse said that since she 
was in that condition he would carry backe the 
letter to me : the wooman ansard that if he would 
leave the letter with her she would give it her lady 
when she came to her self but that nowe she knue 
nobody and calld all that ware abowet her my Lord 
Embasodor and my Lady, and spocke of nothing 
but them ; as soone as I heard this I sent to the Arch 
Bishop of Paris to let him knowe that haveng sent 
to Bellchas to specke with my daughtar and to send 
her a letter of consaren from the King I heard that 
she was extrem ill and could not com to the Parloyer, 
wherefor I desiered he would send to the Abbes to 
let one of my weemen goe in to speck with her : 
he immedietly writ, on which I sent Pigon ^ with : 
when she went to the Abbcsse she sayd that my Lady 
Sussex was not so ill as that thar was a nesesety of 
opening the dores of the monestry, and that if she 
would com at seven a clocke at night my Lady Sussex 
would be at the Parloyer, but that nowe she could 
not com becaus she had binne just let blood, and 
that for comming in she would not permit her : 
uppon this I sent agan to the Archbishop and sent 
your letter to him, which I mad to be put into french 
that he might se why I prest him so earnestly, and 
desierd him to send a more positive command to 
the Abbes : he read the letter and sayd he was very 
much surprisd but he would send a Prist along with 
my wooman and him to specke to the Abbess, but 
that Prist should goe in his coach : all this was to 

^ Mrs. Pigeon (?), evidently a successor to "her line woman 
Willson " of whom Pepys tells us. 



230 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

gane time that he might send as I beleve to my 
Lady Sussex whoe he visits very often : and this 
monestry whar she is is cald the Bishops monestry 
and has none o£ the best reputations ; when Pigion 
cam to the monestry the Prist talket with the Abbess 
abowet half an hower and then cam to her and told 
her that my Lady Sussex was at the Parloyer : she 
went thar and found my Lady Sussex siting thar with 
the Embasodor : she gave her the leter : the Embasodor 
turnd to her and told her, ' M^s Pigion, the King, 
has som of your letters.' She made him a cursy and 
sayd, ' has he, my Lord, I am very glad of it.' My 
Lady Sussex sayd, ' M^s Pigion, if the King knue the 
reasons I have for what I have don he would be more 
angre with my lady then with me, for that I can 
justyfy to the King and the world why I have don 
this, and though I have conseald it all this whill 
owet of respect to my Lady, I will satisfy the King, 
and I dowct not but he will turne his angre from 
me to my Lady.' Pigion told her, ' these ware thinges 
she did not enter into and that she had only orderes 
from me to aske her for the letter when she had read 
it that I might sattisfy pepell that it was not by the 
Kinges order she was thar.' She sayd ' noe, she would 
not give the leter backe ' : uppon which the Embasodor 
stood up and sayd, ' my Lady Sussex, doe not give 
the letter backe ' : ' No, my Lord,' says she, ' I doe 
not intend it ' : with that the Embasodor rise up 
and sayd, ' M^^ Pigion, doe you knowe whoe my 
Lady Sussex is that you should dare to dissput withe 
her the delivering the leter.' She sayd, ' my Lord, I 
hop I have don nothing unbecomming the respect 
I aught to pay my Lady Sussex.' ' Yes,' says he, 
' you se she is not well and you argue with her.' 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 231 

* My Lord,' says she, ' I only aske her for the leter 
again as my Lady commanded me.' ' The King,' 
says he, ' has Letters both of yours and your ladys.' 
' My Lord,' says she, ' what letters I have writ I doe 
not at all aprehend the Kinges seing, and for my 
Lady she is very well inforamd of all that is past.' 
' Mes Pigion,' says he, ' my Lady Sussex being the 
Kinges daughter it was not fit for her to live with 
my Lady Duchess whoe lead so infamos a life, and 
therfor she removed, and if annybody askes whoe 
counseld her to it you may tell them it was I.' ' 'Tis 
anof, my Lord,' says Pigion, and so mad a curse and 
cam awaye ; this I thought fite to give you an acount 
of with all sped that you may se howe this ill man 
sekes to ruen her : he made her goe to court with my 
Lady Embasodris, and she was at the hotell de ville 
of S* Jhons day at the fyer and the super, and has 
mayd a great manny fyn clothes and tacken thre 
weemen to wayet one her, of the Embasodors pre- 
fering, and a swise to stand at her Parloyer dore, 
and thar is furneture a making for her apartment 
and she is tacking more footmen, for as yeat she has 
but one ; I dowet not but that the Embasodor will 
invent a thousan lyes for her and himself to writ to 
you of me : but beleve me uppon my word if thay tell 
truth thay can have nothing to say of my conduckt, 
for I have both before I went into England and 
since I cam back lived with that resarvednes and 
honnor that had you your self market me owet a 
life I am sure you would have orderd it so : and had 
it not binne for that sely Leter his malis could not 
have had a pretentian to have blasted me, and thous 
leters can never be knowen but by him and my Lady 
Sussex : pray if your Ma'^ has them send them to me 



232 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

that I may se if thay ar all and the originales : if 
not I bege of you to oblige them to deliver them to 
you, for I knowe not what ill use thay may make of 
them ore wether the Embasodores malis may not 
forge letters I never writ : if you will let me se thous 
you have I will aquant you wether ore noe thay be 
all ; you ar pleasd to command my Lady Sussex to 
stay in the monesstery at Conflans : I bege of your 
Ma*^ not to command her that for it must be very 
uneasy to her and me to, ever to live together aftar 
such a prosiding as she has had to me, and though 
I am so good a Christen as to forgive her, yeat I 
cannot so fare conquer my self as to se her dayly, 
though your Ma^^ may be confydent that as she is 
yours I shall allways have som remans of that kindnes 
I had formerly, for I can hate nothing that is yours ; 
but that which I would propos to you is that you 
would writ a letter in french which may be showed 
to the Arch Bishop of Paris, in which you desier 
she may be put into the Monestry of Portroyall at 
Paris, and that she maye have to nuns given her to 
wayet on her, and that she cares no sarvants with 
her, that she stires not owet nor reseaves no visits 
what so ever withowet a leter from me to the Abbes : 
for whar she is now all pepell visits her and the 
Embasodor and others careys consorts of museke 
every day to entertan her : so that the holle disscores 
of this place is nothing but of her, and she must be 
ruend if you doe not tacke som spedy cores with her : 
this Portroyall that I propos to you is in great repu- 
tation for the piete and regularety of it, so that I 
thinke it much the best place for her : and for Conflans 
ware it not for the reasons I have given you before 
that place would not be proper for her, for she has 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 233 

hy great presents that she has mad the Abbess gand her 
to say what she will : for when I cam over she would 
have conseald from me my Lady Sussex frequent 
goeng owet of the monestry, but that it was so puplike 
she could not doe it long : and when she sawe that 
she sayd that my Lady Sussex told her she went 
owet for afares of min that I had orderd her to doe 
in my absance : this being, Conflans is of all places 
the most unfit for her and would be the most un- 
easse to me : therf or I doe most humbly bege of your 
Ma'y not to command her that place." 

It is in this letter that the Duchess of Cleveland, 
as has already been pointed out, speaks of her daughter 
Anne as if there were no possible doubt of the King 
being her father. We do not know whether Charles 
now yielded to the mother's demand that she should 
be sent to Port Royal instead of Conflans, or whether 
she was brought back to England now, in spite of her 
" conultion fits." But already attempts had been 
made to persuade Lord Sussex to receive her again, 
and sooner or later she rejoined him. Although she 
bore him an acknowledged daughter before the end 
of Charles's reign, her reputation continued to be 
evil, as might have been expected from so bad a 
beginning. She separated from the Earl again, 
and after the abdication of James II went to live 
at Saint Germain. In 1703 her mother is found 
writing to Sir Thomas Dyke (one of the trustees of 
the Sussex marriage settlement), expressing concern 
for the position of her "daughter Sussex and her 
childerne," threatened with ruin by Lord Sussex's 



234 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

extravagance. In 171 5 His Lordship died. In 171 8 
his widow found in Lord Teynham another man bold 
enough to marry her. He shot himself, however, five 
years later at his house in the Haymarket in a fit of 
madness, whereon the widow married a third time. 
Losing this husband, the Hon. Robert Moore, less than 
three years after the wedding, Anne resigned herself 
to her fate, and lived another twenty-seven years 
without a spouse, dying finally in 1755. 

Whoever was her father, Anne certainly proved 
her descent from her mother, as was recognised 
readily by the libellous verse-writers of the day, 
who coupled their names together in unpleasing 
doggerel. 

As for the wicked ambassador, his career as a 
diplomatist was at an end as long as Charles remained 
on the throne. He left Paris without waiting to be 
recalled. On reaching England he found himself no 
longer of the Privy Council, and denied even a hearing 
by the King. Until Charles's death he remained 
a man whose acquaintance was dangerous to the 
reputation of a courtier. James II unwisely ad- 
mitted him to favour, and in return found him one 
of the first to desert to William of Orange. 

Victory in the Montagu affair undoubtedly re- 
mained with the Duchess of Cleveland, but she 
had not won it without a loss on her side. Charles 
found it hard to forgive her disregard of his in- 
junction that she should "live so as to make the least 
noise she could," and his generosity which she so 
fulsomely acknowledged did not extend so far as to 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 235 

allow her to return to England until another fourteen 
months had elapsed. 

Moreover, there was another reason against her 
return. Lord Castlemaine had come back to England 
in the summer of 1677, and had taken up his residence 
in London again. We last saw him, after his mission 
in the company of Sir Daniel Harvey to Turkey, 
travelling on his own account. Now some affairs 
connected with his property brought him back, 
and he found no longer any reason of honour why he 
should not stay. 

If she remained in France, however, the Duchess 
of Cleveland retained her interest in her sons' affairs 
at home. In the Savile Correspondence there is a 
letter written by Henry Saville in Paris to his elder 
brother on September 21st, 1678, which certainly 
must refer to the Duchess of Cleveland. " As for 
the question you ask," says Savile, " concerning 
Her Grace and her son's pretensions to my Lady 
B. P., that is a matter she has had very long in her 
wishes, but has fail'd in all the attempts of carrying 
it further, and is at last tired with the King's non- 
chalance in the prosecution, which could hope for 
success from nothing but his vigour in it. However, 
the young lord stays this winter in England, to be at 
least in the way, and if any method can be found 
to set the business on foot, I will take upon me the 
part of minding the King to be a little more vigorous 
now it is near than he was when it was at a further 
distance, which possibly was the occasion of his taking 
so little care in it." 



236 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

" My Lady B. P." is without a doubt Lady Elizabeth 
(Betty) Percy, only daughter and heiress of the last 
Earl of the old Northumberland line, Joceline Percy. 
Some have identified the son of Her Grace here 
referred to with Charles, Duke of Southampton ; 
but the evidence is in favour of George Fitzroy, or 
even of Henry. George was the first of the 
new Northumberland line, and was still unmarried. 
Charles had been married for seven years, and, im- 
perious as was the Duchess of Cleveland, she could 
scarcely have hoped to undo now that marriage which 
she had forced on with such violence in 1671. 
Henry Fitzroy, too, was a more likely candidate than 
Charles, for we do know that the Duchess endeavoured 
to upset the half-completed contract with the daughter 
of the Arlingtons. Indeed Lady Chaworth writes 
positively to Lord Roos on December i8th, 1677, ^^^^ 
the Duchess of Cleveland " designes to get the King 
to break her son the Duke of Grafton's marriage to 
Lord Arlington's daughter, and then hopes to make a 
match between him and Lady Percy, and her son 
Northumberland and M'^ Anne Mountagu, which 
double marriage they say Lady Northumberland and 
her husband aproove." Perhaps the match-making 
Duchess offered the choice of her sons Henry and 
George. 

Betty Percy's guardians, of whom the chief was her 
grandmother, decided, however, in favour of Henry 
Cavendish, Earl of Ogle, son of the Duke of New- 
castle, to whom they married her in 1679. ^&^^ 
died in a year, and Betty was next contracted (or 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 237 

sold, as people said) by her grandmother to the 
extremely wealthy commoner, Thomas Thynne, friend 
of the Duke of Monmouth and once suitor for Anne 
Fitzroy's hand, it seems. Although she now ex- 
pressed her disapproval of George Fitzroy on account 
of his parentage, the young lady was far from having 
a liking for Thynne, and she fled in aversion immedi- 
ately after the private celebration of her wedding. 
To anticipate events, on February 12th, 1682, Thynne 
was brutally murdered in Pall Mall by Count John 
von Konigsmark, brother of the hapless Sophia 
Dorothea's lover, and two accomplices, leaving Eliza- 
beth at the age of fifteen again a widow. As we shall 
see, the Duchess of Cleveland once more tried to 
secure her hand for her son — and once more failed. 

If she had been absent from England at the 
remarriage of her daughter Charlotte to the Earl 
of Lichfield in 1677, the same was not the case at 
the remarriage of her son Henry, Duke of Grafton, 
to Isabella Bennet in November 1679. In fact, 
the Duchess was back in London four months pre- 
viously, for Narcissus Luttrell, whose quaint diary 
of events from this time onwards helps us with 
occasional references to Barbara, has the following 
entry under July of that year : " The latter end 
of this month the Dutchesse of Cleaveland arrived 
here from France. About this time Mrs. Gwyn, 
mother to Madam Ellen Gwyn, being in drink, 
was drowned in a ditch near Westminster." ^ 

■' The date of the Duchess's return is also approximately fixed by 
an amusing letter written on July 31st by Edward Pyckering to Lord 



238 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

The Duchess of Cleveland had attempted to break 
off the alliance with the Arlingtons, but, finding 
herself unable to do so, figured among the principal 
guests at the wedding on the evening of November 
6th, 1679. Evelyn, who was present, has the following 
account : 

" The ceremonie was performed in my Lord 
Chamberlaines (her fathers) lodgings at Whitehall 
by the Bishop of Rochester, His Majesty being 
present. A sudden and unexpected thing, when 
every body believ'd the first marriage would have 
come to nothing ; but the measure being determined 
I w-as privately invited by my Lady, her mother, 
to be present. I confesse I could give her little joy, 
and so I plainely told her, but she said the King 
would have it so, and there was no going back. This 
sweetest, hopefullest, most beautifull child, and 
most vertuous too, was sacrific'd to a boy that had 
been rudely bred, without any thing to encourage 
them but His Majesty's pleasure. I pray God 
the sweete child find it to her advantage, who, if 
my augury deceive me not, will in a few years be 
such a paragon as were fit to make the wife of the 
greatest Prince in Europe. I staled supper, where 
His Majesty sate betweene the Dutchesse of Cleave- 
land (the mother of the Duke of Grafton) and the 
sweete Dutchesse the bride ; there were several 

Montagu. " The Duchess of Cleveland is lately come over," he says, 
"and will shortly to Windsor, if not there already. His Majesty 
gave the Commissioners of the Treasury fair warning to look to them- 
selves, for that she would have a bout with them for money, having 
lately lost ;^20,ooo in money and jewels in one night at play." 
Charles had not lost his dread of the harpy's claws ! 



THE DUCHESS IN PARIS 239 

greate persons and ladies, without pomp. My love 
to my Lord Arlington's family and the sweete child 
made me behold all this with regret, tho' as the 
Duke of Grafton affects the sea, to which I find his 
father intends to use him, he may emerge a plaine, 
usefull, and robust officer, and were he polish'd, 
a tolerable person, for he is exceeding handsome, 
by far surpassing any of the King's other natural 
issue." 

To signalise the return of the ex-mistress to England 
there appeared, in the very month of the Grafton 
wedding, a virulent libel upon her and the Duchess 
of Portsmouth, forming part of an effusion entitled 
j47i Essay on Satire. Nine lines of this were as 
follows : 

'* Yet sauntering Charles, between his beastly brace, 
Meets with dissembling still in either place, 
Affected humour, or a painted face. 
In loyal libels we have often told him 
How one has jilted him, the other sold him ; 
How that affects to laugh, how this to weep, 
But who can rail so long as he can sleep ? 
Was ever Prince by two at once misled, 
False, foolish, old, ill-natured, and ill-bred ? " 

The authorship of these uncomplimentary verses 
was attributed to the Earl of Mulgrave and John 
Dryden in collaboration. The King took in good 
part the censure administered to him, and only 
expressed his amusement. Certainly he had been 
very lightly treated in comparison with the ladies. 
In the lines — 

" How that affects to laugh, how this to weep, 
But who can rail so long as he can sleep ? " 



240 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

the laugher and railer is Cleveland, the weeper 
Portsmouth, whose most effective argument was said 
always to be tearsr Yet, strange to say, on this oc- 
casion, it was the weeping lady who was the one 
to take action. We hear o£ no move on the part o£ 
the Duchess of Cleveland, but the ruling mistress 
hired a gang to waylay and beat Dryden for his 
insolence. 

Perhaps the authors of this libel were inspired 
to be so bold by the recent more than usual kindness 
of the King toward his wife. For in the summer of 
this year the Countess of Sunderland had written 
to Henry Sidney that the Queen " is now a mistress, 
the passion her spouse has for her is so great." 

Charles, however, had no intention of reforming. 
My Lady Portsmouth continued her sway, and 
the Duchess of Mazarin and Madam Gwynn, the 
latter recently bereaved in the painful way described 
by Luttrell,' had their shares in his affections still. 
If the Queen had no reason for hope, neither had 
the Duchess of Cleveland. She returned to Paris, 
though the date of her departure is unknown, beyond 
that it was probably before December 4th, when 
Cleveland House is known to have been occupied by 
some one else. 



CHAPTER XII 

THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES II 

APART from the uselessness of attempting to 
reconquer Charles's heart, even if she wanted 
to, the Duchess of Cleveland could not have found 
England a very pleasant place to live in at the end 
of 1679. Since she had first withdrawn to Paris 
the " No Popery " cry had enormously swollen 
in volume. Demonstrations of hatred for the Pope 
were common occurrences throughout the country. 
No doubt Lady Cleveland could have witnessed one 
on the eve of her son's wedding had she visited the 
City that day. Such pretty scenes as are described 
by Charles Hatton to his brother were not confined 
to one year. Hatton writes, in November 1677, of 
" mighty bonfires and the burning of a most costly 
pope, caryed by four persons in divers habits, and 
the effigies of two divells whispering in his eares, 
his belly filled full of live catts who squawled most 
hideously as soone as they felt the fire ; the common 
saying all the while, it was the language of the Pope 
and the Divel in a dialogue betwixt them." 

But the violence of feeling against the Roman 
Catholics was not confined in its expression to such 
ghastly fooleries as this. The hideous Titus Oates 

R 241 



242 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

and his allies had now invented what Luttrell calls, 
and probably quite honestly believed to be, " a 
hellish conspiracy contrived and carried on by the 
papists," of which the chief object was to murder 
the King — himself a Roman Catholic, little as Gates 
and company suspected it ! Although the worst 
days of the persecution were still to come, it was 
already very unsafe to be known as a Papist. One 
of the early sufferers was Lord Castlemaine, who 
had been committed to the Tower in the autumn 
of 1678, and, after being released, was put back 
again at the very time of his former wife's presence 
in England, Dangerfield having in October sworn 
that Lords Arundel of Wardour and Powis had 
offered him ^{^3000 to kill the King and that Lord 
Castlemaine had blamed him for not accepting 
the money for so glorious a work. Lord Powis, 
who was Castlemaine's first cousin, being the son 
of the first Lord's son, as Castlemaine was son of 
his daughter, had gone to the Tower in 1678, to 
spend most of his time there since. His wife, before 
marriage Lady Elizabeth Somerset, daughter of the 
Marquis of Worcester, was sent thither, too, in the 
autumn of 1679, three months after Samuel Pepys. 

It was impossible to prove Popish sympathies 
against Pepys, as all readers of his Diary will under- 
stand. But the Powises and Castlemaine were well- 
known Roman Catholics, and had great difficulty 
in rebutting the charges of conspiracy against the 
King's life, supported by some swearing as hard as 
has ever been heard in a court of law. In the case 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 243 

of Castlemaine it was the infamy of the witness 
Dangerfield's character which served him best and 
led to his acquittal in June 1680. 

Had the Duchess of Cleveland remained in the 
country she might also (unless her very lack of repu- 
tation would have saved her) have been the object 
of persecution like her former husband and so many 
other highly placed Roman Catholics. Even the 
mistress en titre could not entirely escape. Attacks 
on her in Parliament in April 1679 were repeated 
at the end of the year, and an attempt was made to 
compel the King to exile her from Court. Indeed, 
she was so alarmed that she herself was for a time 
anxious to leave England. The ex-mistress escaped 
such terrors and, safe in France, witnessed similar 
tyrannical oppression there of the Protestants. 

For nearly two years now we lose sight of the 
Duchess, but in the middle of September 1681 she 
was expected on another visit to England, Luttrell 
recording that her house was at that time preparing 
for her reception. During her last absence in Paris 
it would appear that she had let Cleveland House, 
for Evelyn records dining with Lords Ossory and 
Chesterfield " at the Portugal Ambassador's, now 
newly come, at Cleaveland House." Of the reason 
for this visit in 1681, if it was actually paid, we are 
not told, but it may possibly have been in connection 
with an honour about to be bestowed upon the Duke 
of Grafton, who was in high favour with the King. 
On December 30th at a review in Hyde Park of the 
Household Troops the Duke was publicly presented 



244 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

by His Majesty with a commission as Colonel of the 
Foot Guards. 

Perhaps, however, the contemplated visit did 
not actually come about until the spring of the 
next year, when we know Her Grace came over. A 
libellous poem entitled A Dialogue between the D. 
of C. and the D. of P. at their meeting in Paris with the 
Ghost of Jane Shore seems to show that she was in 
the French capital in March, if it is based on the 
actual simultaneous presence there of the two 
Duchesses. Lady Portsmouth left Whitehall with 
her little son on March 4th, 1682, on her way to 
Paris, whence she went to the waters of Bourbonne 
for the benefit of her health. And on April 20th 
Viscountess Campden writes to her daughter the 
Countess of Rutland : " Lady Cleaveland is come over. 
Yesterday I heard the King had not yet given her a 
visit, and to-day I hear has visited her five times a 
day." 

On reaching England the Duchess of Cleveland 
took up again her scheme for the marriage of her 
youngest son George, Earl of Northumberland, 
to the heiress of the Percies. The wealthy little 
beauty Elizabeth had been made a widow for the 
second time by Thynne's murder in February, and 
two of her former suitors had lost no time before 
presenting themselves again, the Duke of Somerset 
and the Earl of Northumberland. The Duke was 
much the older of the two, being thirty as against 
his rival's seventeen. The son of the King had no 
doubt a Dukedom like his brothers' in sight ; but 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 245 

Charles Seymour was sixth Duke of his Hne hy legiti- 
mate inheritance. Elizabeth had already expressed 
her prejudice against " a bastard " and had been 
confirmed in it by her grandmother, quoting passages 
of Scripture to reinforce the argument. So the 
marriage with Somerset was quickly arranged and 
on May 30th, 1682, Ehzabeth took the Duke as 
her third husband in the course of three years. 

To console the shghted Earl of Northumberland 
the King made him a Duke within a year's time 
(April 6th, 1683) and a Knight of the Garter nine 
months later. 

From the time of her arrival in England with 
the Duke of Grafton in April 1682 until just before 
the death of Charles H, the history of the Duchess 
of Cleveland is extremely vague. Luttrell, as we 
have seen, makes her come to Whitehall, but in 
his notices of the Court's doing in the following 
month he never mentions her name. He records 
Lady Portsmouth's return to England in July and the 
expectation of the arrival that month of the Comtesse 
de Soissons, Olympia Mancini, sister of the Duchess 
of Mazarin. But neither in London, at Newmarket, 
or elsewhere does he give a hint of the presence of 
the Duchess of Cleveland. Nor does Evelyn speak of 
her being in England again until 1685. But Mr. 
Steinman discovered a letter in the Bodleian Library 
at Oxford which shows that she was in London in 
March 1684. From here she writes to the Duke 
of Ormonde, in full confidence of his forgetful ness 
of their former violent disagreement, and asks for 



246 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

his support in connection with certain petitions to 
him. " I doe not dowet," she writes, " your favorable 
reportc tharuppon, which I shall tacke as a marke of 
that frindshippe you allways ownd to have for her 
that is My lord your Ex[ce]ll[ency's] most faithfull 
humblle sarvant Cleaveland." 

Thirteen days after this letter was Easter Sunday, 
March 30th, 1684, when Evelyn witnessed the re- 
markable scene which he thus describes in his Diary : 
" The Bishop of Rochester preached before the 
King ; after which His Majesty, accompanied with 
three of his natural sonns, the Dukes of Northumber- 
land, Richmond, and St. Albans (sons of Portsmouth, 
Cleaveland, and Nelly), went up to the Altar ; the 
three boys entering before the King within the railes, 
at the right hand, and three Bishops on the left. . . . 
The King kneeling before the Altar, making his 
offering, the Bishops first received and then His 
Majesty ; after which he retired to a canopied seate 
on the right hand." 

It is possible, therefore, that the Duchess of Cleve- 
land was in London when Charles made this wonderful 
display of himself, in a church which he had secretly 
long deserted, in the company of her son and those 
of two of her rivals — three of the six Dukes whom 
he had added to the peerage from among his natural 
children. It may be noted that Evelyn thinks 
Northumberland " the most accomplished and worth 
the owning " of the six, " a young gentleman of 
good capacity, well-bred, civil and modest . . . extra- 
ordinary handsome and well shaped." 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 247 

Of all Charles's numerous sons, Northumberland 
was the one who most resembled him in appearance, 
being described by John Macky as " a tall black 
man like his father the King." A verse libel on him 
a few years later speaks of " his beautiful face and 
his dull stupid carriage." Northumberland scarcely 
fulfilled Evelyn's hopes about him. Nor from his 
only two notable exploits — the kidnapping of his 
wife in 1685 and his prompt betrayal of the flight 
of James H and desertion to William in December 
1688 — should we have judged him to deserve Macky's 
verdict, " He is a man of honour, nice in paying his 
debts, and living well with his neighbours in the 
country " ; or Swift's manuscript note thereon, 
" He was a most worthy person, very good natured, 
and had very good sense." 

Northumberland was perhaps a little more estimable 
than his brother Grafton, though Evelyn, owing 
to his respect for the young Duchess, was on good 
terms with the latter, and Burnet considered him, 
if rough, the most hopeful of all Charles's children 
and, but for his premature death, likely to have 
become a great man at sea. In recognition of his 
naval abilities Charles made him Vice-Admiral of 
England at the end of 1682, in succession to the late 
Prince Rupert. Indeed the father amply atoned for 
his early unwillingness to recognise him as his son, 
and heaped honours on him toward the end of his 
reign. James II was equally generous to him, in 
return for which Grafton deserted him even earlier 
than did Northumberland. 



248 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

As for Southampton, no one ever discovered 
merit in him. His first wife, the little Mary Wood, 
died in 1680, aged only sixteen. The next we hear 
of the Duke is five years later, when he brings an 
action in Chancery against her uncle. Dr. Wood, 
Bishop of Lichfield, suing (as next of kin through 
her to the deceased Sir Henry Wood) for ^30,000. 
This was adjudged to him as being part of Mary's 
rightful portion. After this new triumph over 
justice, Southampton relapsed into obscurity for a 
few years more. 

In connection with two of these sons there is 
introduced now into the story of the Duchess of 
Cleveland's life a new and remarkable person. Since 
the explosion caused by the publication of her affairs 
with Montagu and Chatillon in 1678 there was 
a period of silence concerning the Duchess's intrigues. 
Perhaps, alarmed by what had happened then, she 
had for a time been endeavouring to obey Charles's 
injunction to live so as to make the least noise she 
could. But it is certain that she had not changed 
her manner of life in any other respect. Boyer, 
when " drawing a Veil over the Life this Lady led," ^ 
cannot refrain from mentioning nevertheless that 
" she descended to the embraces of a Player, a High- 
wayman, and since an Assassine, Evidence, and Remie- 
gadoe.^^ The individual whose character Boyer thus 
pleasantly sums up is a certain Cardonell Goodman, a 
gentleman by birth, but something very different 
by conduct. CoUey Cibber tells us that he was 

^ See p. 190. 




From a mezzotint engraving hy Beckett 

HENRY FITZROV, FIRST DUKE OF GRAFTON 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 249 

styled by his enemies " Scum " Goodman. The 
nickname seems not inappropriate. A parson's son, 
he went to St. John's College, Cambridge, and took 
his B.A. degree in 1670, when he was about twenty- 
one. Expelled by the University for his implication 
in the defacement of the Duke of Monmouth's 
portrait, he came to London and received or perhaps 
bought a place as Page of the Backstairs to the King — 
whose backstairs certainly did not demand persons 
of high moral worth. But he lost this position by 
neglect of his duties and turned from Court to stage, 
joining the King's Company at Drury Lane when 
about twenty-eight. As he was soon playing leading 
parts (including the title role of Shakespeare's Julius 
Ccesar) he must have had histrionic ability. It was 
after he had become an actor that he made the ac- 
quaintance of Lady Cleveland, but the date is un- 
certain. Probably it was at the time of one of her 
visits to London during her residence in Paris, and 
presumably it was before the autumn of 1684, since 
his conduct then could not have introduced him 
favourably to her notice. 

On October 27th, 1684, Narcissus Luttrell records 
that " Mr. Goodman the player (who was sometime 
since committed for the same) pleaded not guilty 
at the Court of King's Bench to an information for 
conspireing and endeavouring to hire one Amidee 
to poyson the Dukes of Grafton and Northumber- 
land." On November 7th we are told that he was 
" tryed at the nisi prius at Westminster . . . and found 
guilty," and on the 24th that " he came to receive 



250 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

his judgment ; which was, to pay ^looo line and find 
sureties for his good behaviour for life." Earher 
in his London career he had come in for a fortune of 
j^2000 on his father's death. This, however, had 
been squandered before he took to the stage, and 
in those days of small salaries he certainly could not 
have paid his fine from what he made as an actor. 
He tried his hand accordingly at highway robbery, 
but was caught and convicted. He must have had 
influence of some sort, for he was pardoned by James H 
and once more adorned the stage. 

We shall hear of Goodman again. For the present, 
we may note that the attempt to poison the two 
young Dukes did not permanently alienate their 
mother's affections from the villain. After his escape 
from the gallows, according to Oldmixon, " the fellow 
was so insolent upon it that one night, when the 
Queen was at the theatre and the curtain, as usual, 
was immediately ordered to be drawn up, Goodman 
cried, ' Is my Duchess come ? ' and, being answered 
no, he swore terribly the curtain should not be 
drawn till the Duchess came, which was at the in- 
stant, and saved the affront to the Queen." 

The year of Goodman's first trial, which may 
have been also that of his earliest acquaintance with 
his Duchess, saw the large payments out of Charles's 
secret funds against the debts incurred by Lady 
Cleveland ten years before on account of her daugh- 
ters' weddings. Her demands on the Privy Purse 
had been outdistanced by the Duchess of Portsmouth, 
who, it has been calculated, had already in 1681 re- 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 251 

ceived as much as _£i 36,668 from her royal lover, 
and knew as well as her predecessor in Charles's 
favour how to make money in addition to what 
she was given by the King. " So damned a jade," 
the very free-tongued Countess of Sunderland de- 
clared her, that " she will certainly sell us whenever 
she can for ^500." It seems impossible to compute 
with any approach to accuracy the extent of the 
Cleveland extortions. 

Apart from this payment against the bills for 
Sussex and Lichfield trousseaus, the gift of the Hamp- 
ton Court stewardship, etc., is the last known grant 
from Charles to his ex-mistress, but there is a story 
of Lord Essex in 1679 being deprived of his post at 
the Treasury because he refused to pay over a gift 
of ^25,000 from the King to the Duchess of Cleve- 
land. Arthur Capel, Earl of Essex, brother-in-law 
of Lord Chesterfield's first wife, was an upright 
and straightforward man. While acting as Lord- 
Lieutenant of L-eland in 1672-7 he had followed 
Ormonde's example in resisting the Duchess of Cleve- 
land's claim to Phoenix Park. After retiring from 
this post in Ireland he was, on the Lord-Treasurer 
Danby's fall early in 1679, put at the head of the 
commission appointed to administer the Treasury. 
The " discoverers " of the Rye-house plot endea- 
voured to implicate Essex in the pretended con- 
spiracy, and, after vainly trying to persuade Charles 
to summon Parliament, he resigned on November 
19th of the same year. Now in a letter written to 
Sir Ralph Verney by a kinsman at Court eight days 



252 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

later there is the following explanation of Essex's 
motive in leaving the Treasury : 

" Some say the E. of Essex went out on this score. 
The King had given Cleveland _^25,ooo, and she 
sending to him for it he denied the payment, and 
told the King he had often promised them not to pay 
money on these accounts while he was so much in- 
debted to such as daily clamoured at their table for 
money ; but if His Maj. would have it paid he wisht 
somebody else to do it, for he would not, but willingly 
surrender his place, at which the King replied, ' I 
will take you at your word.' " 

Lawrence Hyde, younger son of the former great 
Chancellor, succeeded Essex at the head of the 
Treasury Commission, made no difficulty, it was said, 
over paying the money which his predecessor had 
refused and his own father would have died rather 
than pay. But " that Duchess was ever his friend and 
kept him in," says Sir Ralph Verney's correspondent. 

The day of these rapacious harpies, however, 
was nearly at an end. The year 1685 had scarcely 
opened when Charles was overtaken by the fate 
which had been threatening him for some time. 
In the summer of 1679 ^^ ^^^ ^ series of ague fits 
which were sufficiently severe to induce him to fetch 
back the Duke of York from his exile in Holland, in 
case anything serious might occur. Again in May 1680, 
when the Duchess of Cleveland was hiding a somewhat 
diminished head in France, there had been another 
scare caused by a fit which came upon the King at 
Windsor, and compelled him to take to his bed. 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 253 

His physicians diagnosed his malady as ague again, 
and treated him with " Jesuits' Powder."^ His Majesty 
quickly recovered, and in no way abated his usual 
manner of life. When the end arrived it took both 
him and the nation by surprise. But it was some- 
thing worse than ague which had been coming upon 
him. 

At the time of the King's last illness the Duchess 
of Cleveland was in England, whether or not she had 
remained here since the previous March. On January 
25th, 1685, was witnessed the famous scene recorded 
for posterity in Evelyn's Diary. The day was a 
Sunday, and Evelyn writes : " Dr. Dove preached 
before the King. I saw this evening such a scene 
of profuse gaming, and the King in the midst of 
his three concubines, as I had never before seen. 
Luxurious dallying and prophanenesse." A week 
later Evelyn adds further details. 

" I can never forget," he says, " the inexpressible 
luxury and prophanenesse, gaming and all dissolute- 
ness, and as it were total forgetfuUnesse of God 
(it being Sunday evening) which this day se'nnight 
I was witnesse of, the King sitting and toying with 
his concubines, Portsmouth, Cleaveland, and Mazarine, 
&c., a French boy singing love songs, in that glorious 
gallery, whilst about twenty of the greate courtiers 

1 I.e. quinine. Sir William Temple, writing of this drug in his 
Essay on Health and Long Life, says : " I remember its entrance upon 
our stage, and the repute of leaving no cures without danger of worse 
returns : but the credit of it seems now to be established by common 
use and prescription, and to be improved by new and singular prepara- 
tions." 



254 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

and other dissolute persons were at Basset round a 
large table, a bank of at least 2000 in gold before 
them, upon which two gentlemen who were with me 
made reflexions with astonishment. Six days after 
was all in the dust ! " 

There are numerous accounts of King Charles's 
fatal seizure. That given by Sir Charles Lyttelton in 
a letter written on February 3rd, 1685, is perhaps less 
familiar to the general reader than some others. 
" Yesterday," says Lyttelton, " as the King was 
dressing, he was seized with a convulsion fit and 
gave a greate scream and fell into his chaire. Dr. 
King happening to be present, with greate judgment 
and courage (tho' he be not his sworn phizitian), 
without other advise, immediately let him blood 
himself. He had 2 terrible fits, and continued very 
ill all day, and till i or 2 a clock at night. He had 
several hot pans applied to his head, with strong 
spirrits. He had the antimoniall cup, which had no 
greate effect ; but they gave him strong purges and 
glisters, which worked very well ; and they cupped 
him and put on severall blistering plasters of can- 
tharides. It took him abt. 8 a clock, and it was eleven 
before he came to himself. He was not dead, for he 
expressed great sense by his grounes all y« time. At 
midnight there was little hopes ; but after, he fell 
a sleepe and rested well 3 or 4 howers, and S^ Ch. 
Scarboro [Sir Charles Scarborough, the physician] 
told me he thinkes him in a hopefull way to doe well. 
His plasters were taken of this morning, and the 
blisters run very well ; only one is yet on his leg, 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 255 

Avhich is very painfull. He found himself ill when he 
rose ; and those abt. him perceived it (but he said 
nothing) by his talking and answering not as he used 
to doe ; and Thom. Howard desired Will Chiffing 
to goe to him, but he would not let him come in, and 
as soonc as he came out the convulsion seized him, 
and he fell into his chaire." 

On the 3rd Charles was " twice let blood since 
noone," after which the doctors thought he was in 
a condition of safety. But on the night of the 5th 
Lyttelton wrote again to Lord Hatton that he had 
been very ill almost since the previous midnight. 
Hopes of amendment had been dashed, " his disease 
being, as is supposed, fallen upon his lung, which 
makes him labor to breath, and I see nothing but 
sad lookes come from him." The relentless physicians 
drew more blood from the dying man ; twelve ounces 
in the early morning of the 6th, as Evelyn tells. 
" It gave him reliefe, but it did not continue, for 
now being in much paine, and struggling for breath, 
he lay dozing, and after some conflicts, the physitians 
despairing of him, he gave up the ghost at halfe an 
houre after eleven in the morning, being 6 Feb. 1685, 
in the 36th yeare of his reigne, and 54th of his age." 

" He spake to the Duke of York," adds Evelyn a 
little later, recording the King's last wishes, " to 
be kind to the Dutchesse of Cleaveland, and especially 
Portsmouth, and that Nelly might not starve." 
The Secret History of the Reigns of King Charles 11 
and King James 11 says that " all the while he lay 
upon his death-bed, he never spoke to his brother to 



256 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

put him in mind of preserving the laws and religion 
of his people ; but only recommended to him the 
charitable care of his two concubines, Portsmouth 
and poor Nelly." The author of The Secret History 
must indeed have been well informed if he knew all 
that was said by Charles upon his long and agonising 
death-bed ! It is not, however, in order to refute this 
imputation against the dying King that we have made 
this quotation from a work full of crude and reckless 
charges against both Charles and James, but to call 
attention to the fact that only " Portsmouth and 
poor Nelly " are mentioned in this version of the 
commendation of the ladies to the care of the Duke 
of York. Similarly Burnet says that Charles " recom- 
mended Lady Portsmouth over and over again " 
to his brother. " He said he had always loved her, 
and he loved her now to the last ; and besought the 
Duke, in as melting words as he could fetch out, 
to be very kind to her and to her son. He recom- 
mended his other children to him : and concluded, 
Let not poor Nelly starve ; that was Mrs. Gwyn.'" 
Barillon, the French Ambassador, also speaks only of 
a recommendation of the Duchess of Portsmouth and 
"poor Nelly" to James's care. 

It is curious that enemies of Charles II like Burnet 
and the author of The Secret History should omit 
the name of the Duchess of Cleveland in their accounts 
of the dying charge, when Charles's connection with 
her certainly did him as much injury as that wdth the 
Duchess of Portsmouth and more than that with 
Nell Gwynn. Since Evelyn, however, is a most 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 257 

conscientious recorder of what he sees and hears, 
and is not Hkely to have inserted the name of Cleve- 
land through any desire to depreciate the King, of 
whom he is a most tender-hearted censor, we are 
justified in crediting his version rather than that of 
the hostile bishop and the libellous pamphleteer, even 
though these are supported by the French Ambassador. 
We know that Charles appealed to his brother on 
behalf of his natural children, except the Duke of 
Monmouth, who was in disgrace and an exile in 
Holland. He is not likely to have forgotten, therefore, 
the mother of five of them. 

We shall not yield to the temptation to add yet 
another to the innumerable character-sketches of 
Charles H. But it will not be out of place to make a 
few observations upon his treatment of the lady 
with whom he linked his name during the whole of 
his actual reign of twenty-five years. Evelyn is 
not making an unwarrantable assertion when he says, 
in his character of Charles, that he " would doubtless 
have been an excellent Prince, had he been less 
addicted to women, who made him uneasy and always 
in want to supply their unmeasurable profusion, 
to the detriment of many indigent persons who had 
signally served both him and his father," Ingratitude 
is a grievous fault in a prince — though cynics find 
it their commonest failing — and Charles's reputation 
has suflPered enormously from his apparent readiness 
to forget services and betray friends. Yet his letters 
and reported speeches do not show him by any means 
lacking in grateful feeling toward those to whom 



258 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

he considers himself indebted. It is true that it is 
the Charles Berkeleys rather than the Clarendons 
to whom he shows genuine attachment. But Claren- 
don for a long time had little cause for complaint. 
Burnet, who does not like the Chancellor, sees 
Charles so entirely trust him " that he left all to his 
care and submitted to his advices as to so many 
oracles." Clarendon himself, while finding excuses for 
his King's seeming ingratitude to others early in his 
reign in the behaviour of the Royalists, grasping 
at favours and fighting among themselves, when 
it comes to his own betrayal can only attribute His 
Majesty's " fierce displeasure " with him to '* the 
power of the great lady," united with the efforts of 
his personal enemies. There is every reason for 
supposing that Clarendon was right, and that it was 
Lady Castlemaine, as she then was, who brought 
about his ruin in revenge for his unceasing opposition 
to her power since first Charles elevated her to the 
position of official mistress. 

It is scarcely necessary to go beyond the case of 
Clarendon to show that the King gave the lady 
a scandalous licence of interference with the internal 
government of the country ; and in the influencing 
of England's foreign policy we have seen her take 
her share in 1665-6, when she was one of those 
who forced on the war which Louis XIV was so 
anxious to avoid. As to the extent to which Charles 
allowed his mistress to govern him up to the time 
when she left Whitehall for Berkshire House there 
can be no doubt. In spite of his fond belief that 



THE LAST YEARS OF CHARLES H 259 

women did not rule him, Lady Castlemaine's hand 
was in all his affairs, political and financial. 

The financial power of that hand excited more 
indignation than its political workings. The pre- 
cipitation of a war with the unpopular French and 
the ruin of an autocratic Chancellor were watched 
without much concern. But the outpouring of 
vast sums from the country's revenues to gratify 
the tastes of "an enormously vicious and ravenous 
woman " stirred up the wrath of all but the gang 
who shared the spoils with her. It was in vain that 
the King tried to disguise his grants by making out 
the patents to obliging relatives of hers and friends 
of his. It is not possible to reckon up the sum in 
hard cash which he made over to her between 1660 
and 1685. But everyone was aware that it amounted 
to many thousands of pounds a year, and that but 
for the advent of Louise de Keroualle, another beauty 
as ravenous if not as vicious as Barbara herself, it 
might have reached much greater figures. 

But it was not the case that Charles's reckless 
generosity to his first official mistress ceased when 
he deposed her from her post, as we have seen. When 
his passion for her was exhausted, which perhaps 
occurred as early as 1664, he still took a long time to 
break off the habit of his intimacy with her. He 
managed to banish her honourably from her Whitehall 
apartments in 1668, but it was another eight years 
before she took her departure to France. All this 
time she was receiving fresh sources of revenue 
which made the position of discarded mistress more 



z6o MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

lucrative still than that of ruling favourite. Even 
the disgrace which befell her in connection with 
the Montagu affair did not dry up the stream of gold. 
At the very time of his death, Charles's secret funds 
were going to the settlement of some of her old debts. 
In fact, it might be said that even in the tomb Charles 
did not close his purse to her. He died on February 
6th, and nine days later, the morrow of his funeral, 
sums amounting to £305 lis. were paid from his 
secret funds to various tradesmen in connection with 
the unsettled debts for the Sussex and Lichfield 
trousseaus. 

Truly, if Charles, as he told Clarendon, liked 
the company and conversation of Barbara Villiers, 
and felt that, having undone her and ruined her 
reputation, he was " obliged in conscience and 
honour to repair her to the utmost of his power," 
he had made in the course of the twenty-five years 
of their acquaintance very handsome amends for 
the ruin of such a reputation as was hers when he 
met her. The price of real virtue in His Majesty's 
estimation would be incalculable if Barbara's was 
worth so much. 



CHAPTER XIII 
" HILARIA " 

^ I ""HE personal history of the Duchess of Cleve- 
land is even more vague during the brief 
reign of James II than during the closing years 
of his brother's reign. We have seen Evelyn's notice 
of her on January 25th at Whitehall, in the company 
of Charles and the Duchesses of Portsmouth and 
Mazarin. In the upset following the King's un- 
expected death the earliest of the three mistresses 
appears to have escaped public notice. Not so the 
Duchess of Portsmouth. Luttrell, after mentioning 
the report that " His Majesty, the night before 
he was taken ill, was to visit the Dutchesse of Ports- 
mouth," tells how that lady " since His late Majesties 
death hath sent her goods and is retired to the French 
ambassadors ; but 'tis said a stopp is putt to her 
goeing beyond sea by His Majestic till she hath paid 
her debts, which are very great : 'tis said she hath 
also many of the crown Jewells, which some are apt 
to think she must refund before she goe beyond sea." 
She was not, indeed, allowed to leave until about 
two years after Charles's death, for as late as March 
1687 she " is said to be returning to France." 

As for the Duchess of Mazarin, she owed so much 
money in London that it is doubtful whether she 

261 



262 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

could have gone to France, even had she desired to 
do so. She preferred the country of her adoption, 
however, to her country by marriage, and continued 
to reside in London during King James's reign 
and the next, in spite of a request from the House 
of Commons to WilHam that she should be banished. 
And it was in London that, in the last year of the 
seventeenth century, she '" died seriously, with Chris- 
tian indifference towards life," as Saint-Evremond 
declares. 

While two of the three Duchesses are thus known 
to have remained in the country, one for the greater 
part of, and the other throughout, the year, the 
action of Her Grace of Cleveland in 1685 is unknown. 
Seeing that her former husband was in very high 
favour with the new King, it might have been ex- 
pected that she would withdraw for a time. In 
early May Lord Castlemaine was one of the important 
witnesses against Titus Oates in his trial for perjury 
at the King's Bench Bar, as were his kinsfolk the Earl 
and Countess of Powis at Dangerfield's trial a week 
later. The Roman Catholic triumph which followed 
on James's accession, bringing about the well-deserved 
ruin of Oates and Dangerfield and some startling 
conversions among well-known people,^ did not, 
of course, do any harm to Lady Cleveland, a Roman 
Catholic of twelve years' standing. But the lack of 
any mention of her presence in England for the 

* Evelyn, on January 19th, 1686, writes: " Dryden the famous 
playwriter, and his two sonns, and Mrs. Nelly (Misse to the late 
[King]) were said to go to masse ; such proselytes were no greate 
losse to the church." 



" HILARIA " 263 

whole of the first year o£ James's reign would 
suggest that she returned to Paris, were it not for 
one little piece of scandrl mentioned in a letter 
written to the Countess of Rutland by her uncle 
Peregrine Bertie in April 1686. According to this 
letter " the gratious " Duchess of Cleveland had 
just given birth to a son, " which the towne has chris- 
tained Goodman Cleveland," attributing the father- 
hood to Cardonell Goodman. We hear no more 
of this child, and there may, of course, have been 
nothing but malice in the story. But at least it 
argues that the Duchess was in London in March 
1686, and had been there nine months previously. 

The one personal mention of Barbara between 
King Charles's death and the Revolution is contained 
in a letter written by some unknown person to John 
Ellis on July 31st, 1688. This correspondent relates 
that the Duchess of Mazarin, her sister the Duchess 
of Bouillon (Marie Mancini), and the Duchess of 
Cleveland " went down the river on board an East 
Indiaman, and were, it seems, so well satisfied with 
their fare and entertainment that Their Graces 
stayed two or three days." This was certainly a 
rather remarkable proceeding on the part of the three 
ladies. Perchance they were endeavouring to keep 
up their spirits in the midst of the agitation caused 
by the daily expected invasion of England by the 
Prince of Orange. 

Apart from the chronichng of this trip down 
the Thames, what little we hear about the Duchess 
of Cleveland at this period is in connection with 



264 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

her sons. 0£ these the Duke of Grafton was the 
most prominent. At the Coronation of James II 
on April 23rd, 1685, he was present as Lord High 
Constable of England. In the following June he 
proceeded to the West of England in command of 
part of the King's army against the Duke of Mon- 
mouth, and had a narrow escape from death. He 
was drawn into an ambuscade near " Phillipsnorton," 
Luttrell recounts, " where a pretty many were killed, 
with hazard of the Duke himself, had he not been 
timely relieved by some of the King's forces." After 
the crushing of the rebellion at Sedgemoor, where 
he commanded the foot and with the rest of James's 
army "behaved himself with all imaginable resolution 
and bravery," Grafton is next prominent in February 
1686. Luttrell says that on the second of that month 
he " fought a duel with one Mr. Talbott, brother to 
the Earl of Shre[w]sbury and killed him " — a coroner's 
inquest subsequently bringing in a verdict of man- 
slaughter ; Evelyn, that on the 19th the Duke " killed 
Mr. Stanley, brother to the Earle of [Derby], indeede 
upon an almost insufferable provocation," though he 
hopes that " His Majesty will at last severely remedy 
this unchristian custome." We have no clue as to 
what was this almost insufferable provocation, nor 
indeed any details of either affair. For neither does 
Grafton appear to have suffered any harm, since 
next month he is not only at liberty, but is involved 
in an extraordinary escapade with his brother 
Northumberland. 

The youngest of the sons of King Charles and 



" HILARIA " 265 

the Duchess of Cleveland, after his unsuccessful 
wooing of Betty Percy, remained unmarried until 
some time in 1685 or early 1686, when, as one of John 
Ellis's correspondents wrote to him, he was " bubbled 
into marriage with Lucy's widow, to the disgust of 
the King." This " Lucy's widow " was Catherine, 
the relict of a certain Thomas Lucy, but by birth 
the daughter of a poulterer who may have made a 
fortune — although the Countess of Northampton 
writes that the lady was " rich only in buty, which 
tho much prised will very hardly mentaine the quality 
of a Duchess." According to a doggerel poem of the 
period, it was a case of — 

" Lucy into bondage run, 
For a great name to be undone ; 
Deluded with the name of Duchess 
She fell into the Lion's clutches." ^ 

Grafton appears to have helped his brother to 
this match, and when the King's disgust was made 
known he further helped him in that attempt to 
" spirit away his wife " of which Evelyn speaks in 
his Diary on March 29th, 1686. On April 6th some- 
one writes to Ellis to the effect that " the Graces 
Grafton and Northumberland are returned from 
Newport " — sc. Nieuport in Flanders — " and put 
the lady in a monastery ; but the King says it is not 
fit she should stay, nor is it believed she will." 

Grafton's influence on his brother in this affair 

1 One is reminded of what Congreve once wrote to John Dennis : 
" I have often wondered how these wiclted writers of lampoons could 
crowd together such quantities of execrable verses, tag'd with bad 
rhimes." 



266 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

and King James's anger are borne witness to by 
another poem of the time, which says : 

" Since HivS Grace could prefer 

The poulterer's heir 
To the great match his uncle had made him, 

'Twere just if the King 

Took away his blue string 
And sewed him on two to lead him. 

That the lady was sent 

To a convent in Ghent 
Was the counsel of kidnapping Grafton j 

And we now may foretel 

That all will go well 
Since the rough blockhead governs the soft one." 

What was " the great match his uncle had made 
him " appears from a letter of Peregrine Bertie to the 
Countess of Rutland. " I have but jest time," he tells 
his niece, " to send your Ladyship word of the Duke of 
Northumberland owning himself married to Captaine 
Lucy's widow. The King was very angry with him 
about it, for they had treated a match for him with 
my Lord Newcastle's daughter, and all the particulars 
agreed." But no steps seem to have taken to break 
the marriage. At any rate Northumberland did not 
divorce his wife, and on June 17th, 1686, we read in 
another letter from Peregrine Bertie to the Countess 
that " the Dutchess of Northumberland went yesterday 
to waite on the Queen at Windsor, some say to bee 
declared Lady of the Bedchamber." 

This escapade had no effect on the Duke of Grafton's 
advancement, for little more than a year later he is 
found entrusted with the honourable mission of 
escorting the Princess Palatine from Rotterdam to 



" HILARIA " 267 

Lisbon, on her way to be married to the King of 
Portugal. Of his illegitimate nephews Grafton 
appears to have been the favourite of James II. 

In the vear following that in which the Dukes 
of Grafton and Northumberland carried out their 
remarkable abduction, the man to whose honour their 
birth had done so great a wrong reached the highest 
point in his career. In January 1687 he was sent 
by the King as Ambassador Extraordinary to the Pope, 
with a mission to " reconcile the kingdoms of England, 
Scotland, and Ireland to the Holy See from which, 
for more than an age, they had fallen off by heresy." 
Castlemaine proceeded to Rome, and at once began 
to assert the dignity of his post. Letters reached 
England telling of his setting up " the armes of the 
Pope and His Majestie over his pallace, with several 
devices of the catholick religion triumphing over 
heresy " and of " the great splendor and magnificence 
of his reception." ^ But suddenly there came about 
a change in the news, and at the beginning of March 
he " is talkt of to come home," leaving his secretary 
behind him in Rome as ambassador. Innocent XI 
apparently found his pretensions too high, and treated 
him with scant courtesy, being " seasonably attacked 
with a fit of coughing" when the envoy attempted 
to discuss his business with him. So says Wellwood, 
whose Memoirs, however, it must be remembered, are 
entirely coloured by his prejudice against the Jacobite 

1 "His publick entry into Rome," Boyer says in his obituary 
notice on Castlemaine in 1705, "was pompously printed with a great 
many curious copper cuts, at King James the ad's charge. 



268 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

party. " These audiences and fits of coughing," says 
Wellwood, " continued from time to time, while 
Castlemaine continued at Rome, and were the subject 
of diversion to all but a particular faction at that 
Court." At last Castlemaine, in disgust, threatened to 
leave Rome, when the Pope sent him a recommenda- 
tion to " rise early in the day and rest at noon, since 
it was dangerous in Italy to travel in the heat of the 
day." Thereon he departed for England. The 
editor or compiler of King James's own Memoirs says 
that the English envoy " being of a hot and violent 
temper, and meeting a Pope no less fixed and positive 
in his determinations, they jarr'd in almost every point 
they went on." 

But Castlemaine, even if recalled, was not dis- 
graced. On the contrary, in September he was 
sworn of the Privy Council, as his cousin Powis had 
been the year before. Powis was also created a 
Marquis, and his wife on June loth, 1688, the day 
of the birth of James Francis Edward, Prince of 
Wales, was made " lady governess of their Majesties' 
children." Among the loyal adherents of James II 
there were none of higher character than Castle- 
maine and the Powises, and it is a melancholy fact 
that James's bestowal of signal honours on them 
was made within fifteen months of the landing in 
England of his successor on the throne. Had he not 
relied so much on people of a very different stamp, 
James might never have had to abandon that throne. 

The Earl of Castlemaine and his cousins did not 
betray their King. The Powises left for France, 




J'7'OfN a conLCi/ii>o)'a}y zvorf^ puvtisneii in i\onu' 



THE EARL OF CASTLEMAINE AT THE FEET OF INNOCENT XI 



" HILARIA " 269 

the Marquis being condemned in his absence next 
year for being in arms with King James in Ireland ; 
while Castlemaine, remaining in England, was cap- 
tured in the country and sent to the Tower. On 
the other hand, one of the earliest of those actually 
holding office under James to desert to the invader 
was the Duke of Grafton, who joined the Prince 
of Orange before the end of November. What was 
thought of his conduct even at the time when London 
was preparing to welcome the Prince may be gathered 
from the fact that as he was riding along the Strand 
on December 14th at the head of his regiment of 
foot he was shot at by a dragoon near Somerset House. 
The pistol missed fire, and the man was immediately 
shot dead by one of the Duke's soldiers. 

His brother Northumberland was almost as prompt 
to turn his coat, and Southampton followed their 
examples. Their mother's uncles. Sir Edward Villiers 
and Lord Grandison, were both found on the same 
side very early, the former being escort to the Princess 
of Orange on her journey from Holland in February 
1689, while the latter retained his post as captain of 
the Yeomen of the Guard until March. William, 
indeed, seems to have been particularly fascinated by 
the Villiers family. One of them, Elizabeth, daughter 
of Sir Edward, he honoured by making his mistress. 

Whatever may be thought of the conduct of 
her sons and her uncles, who all owed so much to 
the family of Stuart, it was not to be expected that 
the Duchess of Cleveland would let considerations 
of loyalty guide her. She was forty-seven years 



270 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

of age when the change of dynasty took place, and 
her most pressing anxiety was naturally about her 
pension. Life in exile at Saint-Germain was not 
for her. As early as July 13th, 1689, she is found 
writing to the new Lords of the Treasury to the 
following effect : 

" My Lords, 

" I am extremely sensible of your justice in 
renewing my dormant warrant to the Postmaster- 
General or Governour of the Post Office for the 
receipt of my rent charge established by two Acts 
of Parliament on that Branch. But I am very much 
surprised to find that since some objections have 
been made (upon pretence of what Major Wil[d]man 
refuses payment) and the consideration of it left 
to his Majesties Councill, I cannot obteyne a report, 
my request is that your Lordsh'pps will be pleased 
to expedite that justice on my behalf e in hastening 
the report, which may continue me alwayes. 

" Your Lords'pps most humble 
" Ser't, 

" Cleaveland." 

This letter did not have the desired effect. Their 
Lordships at first refused altogether to order Major 
Wildman to pay their most humble servant, and 
at the end of the following January only relented 
so far as to give orders for the payment of one quarter's 
pension while the question was being referred to 
Kensington Palace, recently purchased from the 
Earl of Nottingham to serve as a royal residence. 
And, though she made a piteous appeal on August ist, 
1692, alleging that her creditors' clamour forced her 



"HILARIA" 271 

to write so insistently, apparently it was not until 
another five years had gone by that the Duchess 
received satisfaction of her claims. It does not seem 
to have weighed much with William that he had 
found such useful supporters in the lady's family. 
The chief of these, however, was soon removed by 
death. After taking part in the naval battle off 
Beachy Head in June 1690, Grafton proceeded 
to Ireland, and was mortally wounded at the siege 
of Cork in October, leaving a son to inherit his title, 
and, in later days, to afford some protection to the 
lady to whom they both owed their distinguished place 
in the world. 

It is not certain whether the Duchess of Cleveland 
was in England at the time of King James's retirement 
from Ireland in 1690. But that she was back in 
London again in the spring of the following year, 
and residing at Cleveland House for a time, may be 
supposed from an occurrence there on March 30th, 
1691. On that day there was born a son to the Lady 
Barbara " Fitzroy," who thus before she was nineteen 
gave a proof of her appreciation of her mother's 
example. Herself the reputed daughter of John 
Churchill, she owed her son to James Douglas, Earl 
of Arran, eldest son of the third Duke of Hamilton, 
who had in January 1688 married Lady Ann Spencer, 
daughter of Lord Sunderland. He is described by 
Evelyn as " a sober and worthy gentleman," although 
the connection with the Lady Barbara is poor testi- 
mony to his sobriety or worthiness. At the time of his 
natural son's birth he was a prisoner in the Tower 



272 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

for the second time since the throne changed hands. 
He was arrested on the first occasion because, it was 
said, he waited on the Prince of Orange soon after his 
arrival and told him that he did so by command of 
His Majesty the King. Released shortly afterwards, 
he was re-arrested on the charge of corresponding 
secretly with the French Court, and kept in custody 
for over a year, during which period Barbara Fitzroy's 
child was born. His own family being disgusted 
with him, a condition made by their desire, when he 
was let out upon bail, was that the young lady should 
be despatched out of England. She was accordingly 
sent as a nun to the convent of Pontoise, where she 
ultimately died. The father retired to Scotland, and 
was finally acquitted of conspiracy — to die in 171 2 by 
the sword of the rufiianly Lord Mohun, or of his 
second, General MacCartney, in the duel introduced 
by Thackeray into the closing chapter of Part I of 
Esmond. The son, who was given the name of Charles 
Hamilton, was left from his birth in the care of his 
grandmother Cleveland, with whom we shall hear of 
him again later. 

The Lady Barbara, as we have seen, bore her son 
at Cleveland House in March 1691, and from this 
it has been assumed that the Duchess of Cleveland 
was also at that time at the residence which Charles 
n had presented to her. If so, she was soon com- 
pelled by lack of ready money to quit Cleveland 
House. We know that she was without cash from the 
letter addressed to the Treasury on August ist, 1692, 
She had moved to a house in Arlington Street, 



" HILARIA " 273 

Piccadilly — a street which had then been built only 
two years — in order to save the upkeep of Cleveland 
House, for which she no doubt again found a tenant. 

After her move to Arlington Street, the Duchess 
of Cleveland is once more brought vividly before our 
eyes, owing to a chance acquaintance which she 
made about 1692-3. This was with Mary de la 
Riviere Manley, already alluded to above in con- 
nection with the story of the Duchess's intrigue 
with John Churchill. Her autobiographical romance, 
The Adventures of Rivella, and, in a less degree, 
her unsparing or (to use an expression of her own) 
" flaming " satire, The New Atalantis, provide much 
information about the Duchess, some at least of 
which looks to contain as much truth as can be ex- 
pected from the pen of one woman writing about 
another with whom she has quarrelled. 

De la Riviere Manley, as she is generally called, 
was one of the three daughters of Sir Roger Manley, 
whom Charles H made Lieutenant-Governor and 
Commander-in-Chief of the castles, forts, and forces 
in Jersey as a reward for his loyalty. Sir Roger died 
in 1688, when his celebrated daughter was only 
about sixteen years of age. He left her a small legacy 
in his will, but apparently with no sufficient guardian to 
look after her. At any rate she soon came to grief. 
After having been entrapped into a mock-marriage 
by a cousin (supposed to have been John Manley, son 
of the Cromwelhan Major Manley, and afterwards 
Member of Parliament), she was deserted by him 
and left to shift for herself. She spent, according 



274 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

to herself, three solitary years after her betrayal, 
apparently in London, and must have been about 
twenty-one when she came in contact with the 
Duchess of Cleveland. 

We will let Mrs. Manley tell the tale her own 
way, after mentioning that The Adventures of Rivella 
are cast in the form of a narrative by Sir Charles 
Lovemore to the young Chevalier U^ Aumo7it concerning 
a charming and much-wronged lady Rivella^ who is, 
of course, De la Riviere Manley herself. A " compleat 
key " to the Adventures (published with the third 
edition in 171 7, three years after the appearance of 
the first), states that Lovemore was Lieutenant- 
General Tidcomb. But he is of no importance 
except as the narrator. After explaining to the 
Chevalier that he had known the lady in her girlhood 
in Jersey, had been smitten by her charms, had lost 
sight of her after her father's death, and had sought 
for her determinedly, he continues : 

" One night I happen'd to call in at Madam 
Mazarin's, where I saw Rivella introduced by Hilaria, 
a Royal mistress of one of our preceding Kings. 
I shook my head at seeing her in such company. . . . 
I accepted the offer she made me of supping with 
her at Hilaria's house, where at present she was 
lodg'd ; that Lady having seldom the power of 
returning home from play before morning, unless 
upon a very ill run, when she chanced to lose her 
money sooner than ordinary." ^ 

1 The Comte de Soissons, descendant of Hortense Mancini's sister, 
Olympe, Comtesse de Soissons, has kindly given me the following 
note : " ' The playing is but moderate, and it is the only entertain- 



" HILARIA " 275 

Hilaria^ as has been explained in chapter ix, 
is the Duchess of Cleveland. In the following para- 
graph " the lady who liv'd next door to the poor 
recluse " {Rivelld) is stated in the Compleat Key to be 
" Mrs. Rider, Sir Richard Fanshaw's daughter." 

" Hilaria had met with Rivella. in her solitary 
mansion, visiting a lady who liv'd next door to the 
poor recluse. She was the only person that in three 
years Rivella had conversed with, and that but since 
her husband was gone into the country. Her story 
was quickly known. Hilaria, passionately fond of 
new faces, of which sex soever, us'd a thousand 
arguments to dissuade her from wearing away her 
bloom in grief and solitude. She read her a learned 
lecture upon the ill-nature of the world, that wou'd 
never restore a woman's reputation, how innocent 
soever she really were, if appearances prov'd to be 
against her ; therefore she gave her advice, which 

ment,' says Saint-Evremond in his description of the pleasures of 
hospitality at the Duchesse de Mazarin's. When Hortense's friend 
employs the adjective ' moderate ' to qualify the gambling, for which 
Hortense's apartments in London were so famous that it was 
popularly known as la banque of the Duchesse de Mazarin, he is not 
exact ; he is the only historian who attempted to exculpate Hortense 
from the accusation of being a gambler. It is true that at the 
beginning of her life at St. James's Palace conversation and wit pre- 
vailed in her drawing-room, but this was changed. A croupier by the 
name of Morin ran away from Paris to London and succeeded in 
sneaking into St. James's Palace, where he made the game of basse tie 
(basset) fashionable, and for this game Hortense neglected witty and 
learned conversations. In vain Saint-Evremond protested in his prose 
and verse against the rage for gambling, which competed with con- 
versation as does bridge-playing in our time. He remained vox 
clamant'is in deserto. Morin drove away from Hortense's drawing- 
rooms the whole witty Areopagus which had once frequented them." 



276 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

she did not disdain to practise ; the English of which 
was, To make herself as happy as she could without 
valuing or regretting those by whom it was impossible 
to be valued. The lady at whose house Rivella 
first became acquainted with Hilaria, perceiv'd 
her indiscretion in bringing them together. The 
love of novelty, as usual, so far prevail'd that herself 
was immediately discarded, and Rivella persuaded 
to take up her residence near Hilaria's ; which 
made her so inveterate an enemy to Rivella that 
the first great blow struck against her reputation 
proceeded from that woman's malicious tongue : 
She was not contented to tell all persons who began 
to know and esteem Rivella, that her marriage was 
a cheat, but even sent letters by the penny-post to 
make Hilaria jealous of Rivella' s youth, in respect 
of him who at that time happen'd to be her favourite." 

There is a delightfully modern touch in this use 
of the penny post for the transmission of anonymous 
letters, which was hardly to be expected. Next 
follows the passage which has already been quoted 
in an earlier chapter ^ concerning Count Fortunatus 
and his " ingratitude, immorality, and avarice." The 
story then proceeds : 

" Rivella had now reign'd six months in Hilaria's 
favour, an age to one of her inconstant temper ; 
when that Lady found out a new face to whom the 
old must give place, and such a one, of whom she 
could not justly have any jealousie in point of youth 
or agreeableness ; the person I speak of was a kitchin- 
maid married to her master, who had been refug'd 

1 See p. 1 89. 



" HILARIA " 277 

with King James in France. He dy'd, and left her 
what he had, which was quickly squander'd at play ; 
but she gain'd experience enough by it to make 
gaming her livelihood, and return'd into England 
with the monstrous affectation of calling herself 
a French-woman ; her dialect being thenceforward 
nothing but a sort of broken English : This passed 
upon the Town, because her original was so obscure 
that they were unacquainted with it. She generally 
ply'd at Madam Mazarin's basset-table, and was also 
of use to her in affairs of pleasure ; but whether 
that lady grew weary of her impertinence and strange 
ridiculous airs, or that she thought Hilaria might 
prove a better bubble ; she profited of the advances 
that were made her, and accepted of an invitation 
to come and take up her lodgings at Hilaria' s house, 
where in a few months she repay'd the civility that 
had been shewn her, by clapping up a clandestine 
match between her patroness's eldest son, a person 
tho' of weak intellects, yet of great consideration, 
and a young lady of little or no fortune." 

The Duke of Southampton had, in fact, made a 
second marriage, no more illustrious than his former 
one. His new wife, whom he wedded in November 
1694, was Anne, daughter of Sir WilHam Pulteney, 
formerly Member of ParHament for Westminster 
and Commissioner of the Privy Seal under the new 
regime. With her he settled down to quiet domestic 
' life, dying finally at the age of sixty-eight, and leaving 
a son to bear his title. We now come to RivelWs 
estimate of her former patron's character, from 
which it will be gathered that the young lady was. 



278 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

by the time when they parted, heartily tired of her 
acquaintance, and that when she pubHshed her 
Adventures^ five years after the Duchess's death, she 
feh bound by no considerations of gratitude for any 
favours in the past to respect her memory. " Hilaria" 
she writes, " was querilous, fierce, loquacious, ex- 
cessively fond or infamously rude. When she was 
disgusted with any person, she never fail'd to reproach 
them with all the bitterness and wit she was mistress 
of, with such malice and ill-nature that she was 
hated not only by all the world, but by her own 
children and family ; not one of her servants but 
what would have laugh'd to see her lie dead amongst 
them, how affecting soever such objects are in any 
other case. The extreams of prodigality and covetous- 
ness ; of love and hatred ; of dotage and adversion, 
were joyn'd together in Hilarid's soul." 

Hilaria had now made up her mind to get rid 
of Rivella in favour of the ex-kitchenmaid. But 
just for a few days, pretending a more than ordinary 
passion, she " caused her to quit her lodgings to come 
and take part of her bed " in Arlington Street. 
Rivella was not deceived. She attributed this action 
to Hilaria' s desire to make it more difficult for her 
to see the man she herself was in love with — who, 
the Compleat Key informs us, was none other than 
Goodman the actor. This agreeable personage is 
known to have left the stage by 1690 and to have 
betaken himself to heavy and successful gambling, 
which made another bond of sympathy between him 
and the Duchess. 



" HILARIA » 279 

According to the Adventures Goodman was not 
faithful, having a mistress in the next street whom 
he kept in as much grandeur as his lady. Rivella, 
however, he did not like at all. His feelings towards 
her were hatred and distrust, as he feared that Hilaria 
would learn about his intrigue round the corner 
through " this young favourite, whose birth and 
temper put her above the hopes of bringing her into 
his interest, as he took care all others should be that 
approached Hilaria.^'' So he told Hilaria that 
Rivella had made advances to him — which confirmed 
the news sent by the penny post. But Hilaria^ 
not yet being provided with anyone to take Rivella'' s 
place at once, dissembled her feelings and threw in 
Rivella's way one of her own sons — ^we are not told 
whether it was Southampton or Northumberland — 
leaving them alone together upon various plausible 
pretences. " What might have proceeded from so 
dangerous a temptation," says the supposed narrator, 
" I dare not presume to determine, because Hilaria 
and Rivella's friendship immediately broke off upon 
the assurance the former had receiv'd from the broken 
French-woman that she would come and supply her 
place." 

" The last day she was at Hilaria' s house just as 
they sat down to dinner, Rivella was told that her 
sister Maria's husband was fallen into great distress, 
which so sensibly affected her that she could eat 
nothing ; she sent word to a friend, who could give 
her an account of the whole matter, that she would 
wait upon her at six a clock at night, resolving not 



28o MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

to lose that post, if it were true that her sister were 
in misfortune, without sending her some relief. 
After dinner several ladies came into cards. Hilaria 
ask'd Rivella to play ; she begg'd Her Ladyship's 
excuse, because she had business at six a clock ; they 
persuaded her to play for two hours, which accordingly 
she did, and then had a coach sent for and return'd 
not till eight : She had been inform'd abroad that 
matters were very well compos'd touching her sister's 
affairs, which extreamly lightned her heart ; she 
came back in a very good humour, and very hungry, 
which she told Hilaria, who, with leave of the first 
Dutchess in England that was then at play, order'd 
supper to be immediately got ready, for that her 
dear Rivella had eat nothing all day." 

At the supper-table, Rivella having again mentioned 
how hungry she was, her hostess threw out an in- 
sinuation as to the reason for this, and, on being 
challenged, introduced her son's name in a very 
pointed way. She continued : 

" * Nay, don't blush, Rivella ; 'twas doubtless 
an appointment, I saw him to-day kiss you as he led 
you thro' the dark drawing-room down to dinner.' 
' Your Ladyship must have seen him attempt it,' 
answer'd Rivella (perfectly frighted with her words), 
' and seen me refuse the honour.' ' But why,' reply'd 
Hilaria, ' did you go out in a hackney-coach, without 
a servant ? ' ' Because,' says Rivella, ' my visit lay 
a great way off, too far for your Ladyship's chairmen 
to go : It rain'd, and does still rain extreamly ; 
I was tender of your Ladyship's horses this cold wet 
night ; both the footmen were gone on errands ; 



"HILARIA" 281 

I ask'd below for one of them, I was too well manner' d 
to take the Black, and leave none to attend your 
Ladyship ; especially when my Lady Dutchess was 
here. Besides, your own porter paid the coachman, 
which was the same I carried out with me ; he was 
forc'd to wait some time at the gate, till a guinea 
could be chang'd, because I had no silver ; I beg 
all this good company to judge whether any woman 
would be so indiscreet, knowing very well, as I do, 
that I have one friend in this house that would not 
fail examining the coachman where he had carried 
me, if it were but in hopes of doing me a prejudice 
with the world and your Ladyship.' 

" The truth is, Hilaria was always superstitious 
at play ; she won whilst Rivella was there, and would 
not have her remov'd from the place she was in, 
thinking she brought her good luck. After she was 
gone her luck turn'd ; so that before Rivella came 
back, Hilaria had lost above two hundred guineas, 
which put her into a humour to expose Rivella in 
the manner you have heard ; who briskly rose up 
from table without eating anything, begging her 
Ladyship's leave to retire, whom she knew to be so 
great a mistress of sense, as well as of good manners, 
that she would never have affronted any person at 
her ov/n table but one whom she held unworthy of 
the honour of sitting there. Next morning she wrote 
a note to Hilaria's son, to desire the favour of seeing 
him. He accordingly obey'd. Rivella desir'd him 
to acquaint my Lady where he was last night, from 
six till eight. He told her at the play in the side- 
box with the Duke of whom he would bring to 

justify what he said. I [that is to say, Lovemore, the 
supposititious narrator] chanc'd to come in to drink 



282 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

tea with the ladies. Rivella told me her distress. 
I was moved at it, and the more because I had been 
myself at the play, and saw the person for whom she 
was accus'd set the play out. In a word Rivella waited 
till Hilaria was visible, and then went to take her 
leave of her with such an air of resentment, innocence, 
yet good manners, as quite confounded the haughty 
Hilaria. 

" From that day forwards she never saw her more ; 
too happy indeed if she had never seen her. All the 
world was fond of Rivella, and enquiring for her 
of Hilaria she could make no other excuse for her 
own abominable temper and detestable inconstancy, 

but that she was run away with her son, and 

probably would not have the assurance ever to appear 
at her house again." 

We have quoted The Adventures of Rivella at 
considerable (but, it is trusted, not at excessive) 
length, because there is no other work except Mrs. 
Manley's which throws any light on her patroness's 
doings at this period, and because it seemed a pity 
to abridge to any great extent the account given in so 
amusing, but now so little read, a work. 



CHAPTER XIV 

IN LOW WATER 

'\X7'ITH the help of Mrs. Manley we have been 
able to see something of the life at Arling- 
ton Street of the Duchess of Cleveland after she 
had passed her fiftieth year. One last quotation 
from the same gall-dripping pen will serve to com- 
plete the picture. " The Dutchess," says 7he New 
Jtalantis, " by her prodigality to favourites fell 
into an extream neglect. Her temper was a perfect 
contradiction, unboundedly lavish and sordidly 
covetous, the former to those who administered 
to her particular pleasures, the other to all the rest 
of the world. When Love began to forsake her, 
and her charms were upon the turn, because she 
must still be a bubble, she fell into gamesters hands, 
and play'd off that fortune Sigismund had enrich'd her 
with ; she drank deep of the bitter draught of con- 
tempt, her successive amours, with mean ill deformed 
domestics, made her abandoned by the esteem and 
pity of the world ; her pension was so ill pay'd that 
she had oftentimes not a pistole at command. . . ." 

The portrait, it is to be feared, is scarcely over- 
drawn. The Duchess's want of money, her extreme 
greed for it, and her abandonment to the gambling 

283 



284 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

passion require no proving, nor does her prodigality 
to those to whom she took into her favour. The 
worse charges were freely circulated against her in 
many lampoons published while she was still living. 
The grossness of these verse-tributes to her "execrable 
name " forbids their reproduction here, and it 
must suffice to say that they bear out Boyer's descrip- 
tion of the Duchess as " this second Messalina." 
No doubt there is to be seen in the ferocious onslaught 
upon her the accumulated rage of thirty years, 
the bitter memory of the stream of gold which 
Charles II had poured into her lap ; and the period 
was not one to let considerations of age or sex weigh 
aught when there was a chance offered for exacting 
vengeance. To represent the lady of " the withered 
hand and wrinkled brow " — though the Duchess's 
portrait by Kneller in the reign of Anne, unless it 
was a mere piece of flattery, shows that she really 
retained her good looks to a wonderful extent — 
condemned to seek for pleasure in the meanest of 
company gave the satirists the keenest delight. Never- 
theless, the whole tenor of the Duchess's life en- 
courages the belief that there was not only smoke, 
but also much fire. 

Of one lover, whom the spiteful tongue of Mrs. 
Manley perhaps intended to include among the 
" mean ill deformed domestics," though actually 
he was nothing of the sort, the Duchess of Cleveland 
was robbed in the eighth year of William's reign. 
In February 1695 a number of arrests were made 
of Jacobites said to be implicated in an " Assassination 



IN LOW WATER 285 

Plot " against the life of the monarch. The alleged 
leaders were Robert Charnock and Sir John Fenwick, 
who were convicted of high treason and executed 
in March 1696 and January 1697 respectively — 
Fenwick having avoided capture for some time. 
Among those arrested on the first discovery of the 
plot was Cardonell Goodman. His sympathies with 
King James were well known. Indeed, he had already 
got into trouble less than a year before. On June 1 1 th, 
1695, Luttrell writes : 

" Yesterday being the birthday of the pretended 
Prince of Wales, several Jacobites mett in several 
places, and particularly at the Dogg tavern in Drury 
Lane, where with kettle drumms, trumpets, &c. 
they caroused, and having a bonfire near that place, 
would have forced some of the spectators to have 
drank the said princes health, which they refusing, 
occasioned a tumult, upon which the mobb gathering 
entred the tavern, where they did much damage, 
and putt the Jacobites to flight, some of which are 
taken into custody, viz. captain George Porter, M"* 
Goodman the late player, M^ Bedding, M^ Pate, &c." 

Whether Goodman suffered any punishment for 
his riotous behaviour on this occasion, we do not 
hear. But about the following February 22 nd he 
was again arrested and sent to Newgate. It looks as 
if some attempt were made to connect the Duchess 
of Cleveland with the plot, for on April 7th Luttrell 
says : " M^ Gisburn, of the band of pentioners extra- 
ordinary, is taken into custody, there being found 
in his custody a chest of carabines, and another of 



286 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

pistolls, which he said were sent him by the Dutchesse 
of Cleveland to be kept soon after Goodman was 
apprehended, and is committed to the Gatehouse." 

The Duchess's character must surely have pro- 
tected her from all suspicion of risking anything on 
behalf of James II. Goodman, too, soon revealed 
the nature of his convictions. After his examination 
on April i6th it was observed that he returned to 
Newgate without irons or a military escort, and it 
was generally believed that he had informed against 
the Earl of Ailesbury. Soon after he and " M' 
Porter " (? the Captain George Porter of the Drury 
Lane riot) gave evidence against another conspirator, 
Peter, son of Sir Miles Cook. An attempt was made 
by some persons to get Porter to fly to France, but 
Porter betrayed his would-be bribers, who were 
committed to Newgate. Then on November i6th 
" Goodman and Porter swore positive against Sir 
John," as Luttrell tells us. The result to Fenwick 
was that he lost his head on Tower Hill. Goodman, 
having served his end as an informer, was allowed to 
escape to France. The English Jacobites were said 
to have helped him to get away, to prevent further 
disclosures. The move was not, however, to his 
advantage; for on February nth, 1697, Luttrell 
says : " Several letters from France advise that the 
French King had caused Goodman to be committed 
to the Bastille and put into irons, designing to break 
him upon the wheel for what he swore against Sir 
John Fenwick." He avoided this fate, but two years 
later succumbed to a fever while still in France. 



IN LOW WATER 287 

" Scum " Goodman had quitted his Duchess with- 
out damaging her character as far as poHtics were 
concerned. Nor, even if the " Goodman Cleveland " 
of Peregrine Bertie's letter was a fact, can he 
be said ever to have damaged her character much 
otherwise, for the simple reason that it was beyond 
his power to damage when he first met her. 

While her actor lover was ending his miserable 
career, one who stood in a very different position 
to the Duchess was also suffering for his connection 
with the Stuarts. The Earl of Castlemaine, however, 
was in trouble sooner, and after enduring it longer 
escaped without dishonour. He was arrested at 
Oswestry in January 1689; and after seven or eight 
weeks there was brought to London. On October 28th, 
according to Luttrell, he " attended the House of 
Commons, and being charged with goeing ambassador 
to Rome he excused it by the late King's positive 
command for that purpose: however, they committed 
him to the Tower for high treason." In the May of 
the following year he and the Marquis of Powis 
were among the thirty specially exempted from the 
Act of Indemnity. But although Castlemaine was, 
unlike his cousin, within the clutch of his enemies, 
he was not treated with the full rigour of the law. 
An inexplicable system of petty persecution was, 
instead, put into effect against him. On June 2nd, 
1690, he appeared at the Court of King's Bench and 
was discharged. In August he was again seized, 
and on October 23rd he is found appealing, with 
some others, either to be tried or bailed out according 



288 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

to the Habeas Corpus Act. On November 28th 
the petitioners were admitted to bail, which was 
renewed in the following January. Then on May 
22nd, 1 691, Luttrell writes : "At the Exchequer was 
a tryal between the King and the Earl of Castlemaine 
for 4000/. worth of plate, which he had of King James 
when he went on his embassy to Rome ; the Earls 
council insisted on a privy seal from the late King 
James, which they produced in Court, dated 8 Dec. 
1688, whereby the plate was given to his own use ; 
but the witnesses not being positive whither it past 
the seal really before or after the abdication of King 
James, the jury found for the King, and gave ^2,500 
damages, the value of the plate." 

After this severe blow to his purse, Castlemaine 
seems to have departed to live at Saint-Germain 
for some years, for in the parish registers there his 
name occurs on three occasions between December 
1692 and August 1694 as godfather at the baptism 
of three children born at the Court of King James. 
Once more his private affairs caused him to risk 
returning to England. On September 3rd, 1695, 
we read that " Bills of high treason are found at 
the sessions against 23 persons, most Romanists, 
who have absented the kingdom, as sir Edward Hales, 
Earles of Castlemain and Middleton, &c., who, if 
they doe not appear, will be proceeded against by 
way of outlawry, in order to extend their estates." 
Castlemaine must have appeared, in order to save 
his estate, and have been once more arrested and im- 
prisoned, for we find him on July i8th, 1696, " dis- 



IN LOW WATER 289 

charged out of the Tower, on condition he goe beyond 
sea." He went back to Saint-Germain to find Lord 
Powis, created hy his exiled master Duke, Knight 
of the Garter, and Lord Chamberlain to his house- 
hold, dead and buried just before his own release 
from the Tower. He settled down once more at 
James's Court for a time, but returned again to his 
native land, possibly after the decease of both James 
and William. Boyer makes him " live retiredly in 
Wales " at the last. At any rate, death overtook 
him at Oswestry on July 21st, 1705. In his will, 
which was dated November 30th, 1696, and was 
therefore drawn up subsequently to his banishment 
from England, he appointed as his trustees " my 
Lady Ann, now Countess of Sussex, and John Jenyns, 
of Heys, in the county of Middlesex, Esq.," leaving 
to Anne (though he does not call her his daughter) 
his property in the Savoy and his leaseholds in Mon- 
mouthshire, together with his plate, jewels, and other 
personalty. His body was buried, by his desire, 
in the family vault of the Powises at Welshpool, 
Montgomeryshire. So ended a life ruined by an 
infatuation with a beautiful face. 

We have been anticipating events, and must 
now return to the Duchess of Cleveland at her 
Arlington Street house, occupying her time with 
intriguing, gambling, and evading the demands 
of her creditors, while striving hard to persuade 
William's Government to continue the payment 
of the pension which she had received from Charles 
and had continued to draw under James. We have 
u 



290 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

heard of her urgent appeal in August 1692 and of its 
lack of success. When 1697 opened she was still 
unpaid, and in desperation she prepared a memorial, 
which was read on March 22nd before the Lords of 
the Treasury. In this she represented that by an 
Act of Parliament of the fifteenth year of Charles II 
the revenue of the Post Office was settled on the 
Duke of York, the King having power to charge 
it with a sum not exceeding ;^5382 a year ; that 
Charles had granted to Lord Grandison and others, 
in trust for her, £4700 a year from that revenue ; 
that in James's reign she had an order to receive 
payment of ;^500 a week to satisfy arrears, which 
then amounted to more than ^1300; and that she 
had been compelled to borrow money at interest, 
and now owed nearly ^10,000. She therefore prayed 
for a warrant empowering her to receive the rents 
due to her from her annuity. 

This appeal was rejected at first. But William 
seems to have considered that justice demanded 
he should recognise the grants of his predecessors, 
and accordingly, when the Lords of the Treasury 
at the end of July applied to his Secretary for direc- 
tions during his absence on the Continent, on August 
5th the answer was received that His Majesty desired 
a payment to be made to the Duchess on the 
arrears of her pension proportionable to what had 
been paid to other great persons. The Lords on 
the 24th ordered the Postmaster-General to " satisfie 
the Dutchess of Cleveland's want of ;^235o by 
^100 a week for twenty- three weeks, and ^50 



IN LOW WATER 291 

the last week, the first payment to be made this 
week." 

The struggle of nine years was crowned with victory, 
and Her Grace of Cleveland had succeeded in 
emulating the Vicar of Bray. As changes of reign 
made no difference to his position, so too she under 
Charles, James, and William, and soon under Anne, 
drew her pension of ^4700 from the Post Office. 
It is true that she had the debt of ^10,000 to pay off, 
but debts troubled her not at all so long as she had 
a supply of ready money for present needs and the 
gratification of her desires. She could afford now 
the presents which she loved making to her favourites, 
and v/as free to indulge her passion for gambling 
without humiliating appeals to an avaricious and 
ungrateful Churchill.^ 

Another period of obscurity, if no longer of in- 
digent obscurity, follows. During the last years 
of William the Duchess is not found figuring in 
public. She might " still be a bubble," as Mrs. 
Manley says, but on the top of a muddy pool of her 
own choosing, not on the surface of high society, 
and the polite writers of the day neglect her until 
the time is reached of her curious second experiment 
in matrimony. 

^ A late reference to the Duchess as a gambler may be seen in a 
letter written on August 29th, 1704, when Her Grace was nearly 
sixty-three. Stanley West at Tunbridge Wells tells his friend Robert 
Harley in London : " Here are few persons of quality. , . . The 
Lords George Howard, Petre, and Fanshaw are still remaining, and 
also the Duchess of Cleveland who is a constant player with the 
gentlemen only, and hath had bad success." 



CHAPTER XV 

THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 

AS was only to be expected from her personal 
character, the Duchess of Cleveland had a 
faculty for making the acquaintance of people whose 
reputations were more peculiar than edifying. Among 
all those with whom she came into contact during 
her long life not one, with the exception perhaps 
of Cardonell Goodman, was more extraordinary 
than the man whom she made, for the briefest of 
periods, her second husband. When their paths 
met Robert Feilding was already remotely connected 
with her, through William Feilding, first Earl of 
Denbigh, who married Susan Villiers, Barbara's 
great-aunt. The precise relationship of Robert 
to the Denbighs does not appear, but he was on very 
friendly terms with George, third Earl and younger 
son of the first. The Feildings were descended from 
the Hapsburghs, and were Counts of the Empire ; 
and the Beau did not fail to have the spread eagle 
emblazoned on his coach and to claim the countship 
on occasions. His father, George Feilding, of Hill- 
field Hall,^ Solihull, Warwickshire (now on the edge of 

1 The Beau changed its name to Feilding Hall. By the courtesy 
of the present occupier, Mr. Samuel Boddington, I have been 
allowed to inspect this charming old mansion. The front and a 

292 




From nil engraving by M. Van dei' Giicht 

ROBERT FEILDING 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 293 

Greater Birmingham), married a daughter of Sir 
Thomas Shirley, and their son was well provided for 
when he reached years of indiscretion. He is said 
by some to have been at Queen's College, Oxford, 
and to have served for a time in the army of the 
Emperor Leopold I, commanding a regiment. Another 
account of his early days makes him come up to 
London to study law, but quickly abandon the idea 
when pleasure and fashion had their influence upon 
him, spending his money upon his personal adorn- 
ment, and cutting a great dash with his fine clothes 
and his footmen in yellow liveries with black sashes 
and black-plumed hats. James Caulfield, who is 
responsible for this account, says that he paid for 
his profligacy by disgraceful means, for " the contri- 
butions which he raised from some of the sex he 
lavished upon others." 

Some said King Charles first called him " Handsome 
Feilding " ; others, the ladies who admired him. 

good deal of the rest of the house remain much in the state in which 
they were when the Feildings owned the place. The Feilding arms 
are to be seen on the wall above the window of the dining-room, and 
are also on a stained-glass window which was removed from the Hall 
to Solihull parish church. In a book Solihull and its Churchy written 
by the Rev. Robert Pemberton and privately printed, it is stated that 
the Hall was built in 1576 by one William Hawes. On the death of 
his son, some time after 1653, it passed into the possession of George 
Feilding, who was parish bailiff. He died in 1671, and his son 
Robert sold it to the Rev. Henry Greswold, rector of Solihull. The 
date of the sale Mr. Pemberton places about 1676, but he admits 
that there is no direct evidence to show that the Greswolds owned 
Hillfield Hall until 1709. In his will the Beau describes himself 
still as " Robert Feilding, of Feilding Hall in the County of 
Warwick, Esq." 



294 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

Addison contributed to the Matter in 1709 the follow- 
ing description of him under the disguise of Orlando 
the handsome : 

" Ten lustra^ and more are wholly passed since 
Orla?tdo first appeared in the metropolis of this 
island : his descent noble, his wit humorous, his 
person charming. But to none of these recom- 
mendatory advantages was his title so undoubted 
as that of his beauty. His complexion was fair, but 
his countenance manly ; his stature of the tallest, 
his shape the most exact ; and though in all his limbs 
he had a proportion as delicate as we see in the works 
of the most skilful statuaries, his body had a strength 
and firmness little inferior to the marble of which 
such images are formed. This made Orlando the 
universal flame of all the fair sex ; innocent virgins 
sighed for him as Adonis ; experienced widows 
as Hercules. . . . However, the generous Orlando 
believed himself formed for the world, and not to 
be engrossed by any particular affection." 

Feilding was taken into favour by James H, who 
made him a grant of ;£5oo. He repaid the King 
better than did many whose characters were more 
highly esteemed, since he did not, like the Fitzroys, 
Villierses, Churchills, etc. etc., desert to William of 
Orange at the first opportunity. On the contrary, 
he first raised a regiment on James's behalf in Warwick- 
shire, and later accompanied him on his invasion 
of Ireland after the Revolution, sat in his Irish 

1 This is incorrect, for Feilding was only about sixty-one when he 
died in 1712. 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 295 

Parliament as member for Gowran, co. Kilkenny, 
in 1689, and went back to Saint-Germain with 
him. At the exiled Court he was one of those 
rarities, a man with money, having brought with 
him a sum of _^4000, doubtless part of his second 
wife's dowry. He became reconciled somehow with 
the Williamite Government, possibly through the 
Denbigh influence, for he was living in England 
again at the beginning of 1696. On January nth 
of that year Luttrell tells how " Sir Henry Colt and 
Beau Feilding fought a duel near Cleveland House; 
the former was run thro the body, tho' not mortal, 
and the latter disarmed and escaped." 

It was not over the Duchess that the duel was 
fought, in spite of the curious coincidence with 
regard to its locality and the subsequent Feilding- 
Cleveland marriage. A week later Luttrell says that 
Sir Henry Colt, having recovered from his wound 
and come to the House of Commons, "was ordered 
to bring in a bill to ascertain the wages of servants, 
and more easy recovery thereof, it being about that 
which occasioned the quarrel between him & M' 
Feilding, for the apprehending of whom a proclama- 
tion was this day ordered, offering a reward of ^^200 
to any that shall seize him, for assaulting Sir Henry 
Colt, a justice of the peace, in execution of his oflice." 

It is difficult to imagine how Feilding could be so 
particularly interested in the servants' wages question 
as to fight a duel about it. Yet this is all we know. 
He was arrested early in March, but seems to have 
escaped serious punishment. A fine should not 



296 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

have inconvenienced him greatly, for he had married 
in succession two rich women ; the first the Honour- 
able Mary Swift (daughter of Viscount Carlingford 
and a relative of the Dean), who left him a widower 
in 1682, and the second the lady of whom we have 
already heard as Viscountess Muskerry, one of the 
lively Elizabeth Hamilton's victims at the Court 
masquerade described by Gramont. She was a 
daughter of Lord Clanricarde, and, in spite of her 
ungainly appearance, had already before she met 
Feilding married first Lord Muskerry (the husband 
who had objected to her " Babylonian " fancy 
dress), and on his death a doubtfully legitimate 
Villiers, Robert, by courtesy third Viscount Purbeck, 
and by assumption " Earl of Buckingham." This 
Villiers was slain in a duel in 1684, leaving his widow 
to prove again the power of money by taking to 
herself a third partner. Through his second wife's 
influence, perhaps, the Beau became a Roman Catholic. 
She died in 1698, and for seven years after this he 
remained unmarried, while he ran through her for- 
tune, no difficult feat for so raffish a person as he. 

Before he made his match with the Duchess of 
Cleveland he came into notoriety again over a quarrel 
in the theatre. On December 15th, 1702, Luttrell 
writes: " Last night Beau Feilding was dangerously 
wounded in the playhouse by one Goodyer, a Here- 
fordshire gentleman." Swift, not predisposed to 
love Feilding for having married and spent the 
fortune of a kinswoman of his own, adds a little to 
our scanty knowledge of this affair. In a fragment 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 297 

upon the subject of Mean and Great Figures he 
speaks of " Beau Feilding at fifty years old, when in 
a quarrel upon the stage he was run into his breast, 
which he opened and showed to the ladies that he 
might move their love and pity ; but they all fell 
a-laughing." Sir Walter Scott in his edition of 
Swift's works has a note to the effect that Feilding 
received his wound at Mrs. Oldfield's benefit. " The 
combat took place betwixt him and Mr. FuUwood,^ 
a barrister, whose foot he had trodden upon in press- 
ing forward to display his person to most advantage. 
His antagonist was killed in a duel the very same night, 
having engaged in a second theatrical quarrel. The 
conduct of the hero might be sufficiently absurd ; 
but a wound of several inches' depth was an odd 
subject of ridicule." 

A curious work entitled Cases of Divorce for Several 
Causes, published early in the eighteenth century, 
contains some prefatory " Memoirs of Robert Feilding 
Esq." Here it is stated that " Major-General Feilding 
was undoubtedly one of the Leaders of Cupid, if not 
of Mars " ; and it must be admitted that, in spite 
of his high military rank (which was possibly con- 
ferred on him by King James in Ireland, if not merely 
assumed by himself), it was more as a lover than as a 
warrior that he made his name ; and his violence 
toward the old Duchess, Mary Wadsworth and Mrs. 
Villars, described later, argues in him the heart of 
a bully rather than a man of courage. 

Owing to the rapidity of pace with which affairs 

^ The discrepancy between the names Goodyer and FuUwood is odd. 



298 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

usually progressed with such ardent spirits as Feilding 
and the Duchess of Cleveland, it seems safe to assume 
that it was not before the second half of the year 
1705 that they made each other's acquaintance. 
The lady was then nearing her sixty-fourth birthday, 
and had just lost her unhappy first husband. Feilding 
was ten years younger and was eagerly looking out 
for a third heiress-bride. About the same time the 
names of two promising candidates occurred to him. 
One was a young widow, Anne Deleau, the possessor 
of a fortune of _£6o,ooo ; the other the famous ex- 
mistress of Charles II. He had no difficulty in getting 
to know the latter. According to Addison in the 
Taller^ his first speech on meeting " the beauteous 
Villaria " was to this effect : " Madam, it is not only 
that Nature has made us two the most accomplished 
of each sex and pointed to us to obey her dictates in 
becoming one ; but that there is also an ambition in 
following the mighty persons you have favoured. 
Where kings and heroes as great as Alexander, or 
such as could personate Alexander,^ have bowed, 
permit your General to lay his laurels." 

In reply to this fine speech, the Tatler says in the 
language of Milton : 

" The Fair with conscious majesty approved 
His pleaded reason." 

It was not so easy to scrape an acquaintance with 
Mrs. Deleau, who had a father still living to look 

^ " Such as could personate Alexander," i.e. Goodman, one of 
whose famous parts was Alexander the Great. 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 299 

after her interests. Feilding invoked the assistance 
of one Mrs. Streights, who suggested the employment 
of a certain Charlotte Henrietta Villars, a person 
of no repute (as he was to be called upon to show), 
but able to get access to ladies of quality in the capacity 
of a dresser of hair. Feilding readily agreed — he is 
soon afterwards found to be calling Mrs. Villars by 
the familiar name of "Fuggy" — and confided the 
matter to her care. Before long, with her assistance, 
he introduced himself, as he imagined, to Mrs. Deleau, 
representing himself to her as Earl of " Glascow," 
Viscount Tunbridge, and Major-General Feilding, 
though, of course, he had not even the shadow of a 
claim to the two first titles. He proceeded to take 
the remarkable step of marrying both widows in the 
course of sixteen days. We will not anticipate the 
account of the first marriage, which is set forth very 
fully in the evidence of the great bigamy trial below, 
further than by saying that he was united v/ith the 
supposed Anne Deleau on November 9th, 1705, 
in the lodgings which he had recently taken in Pall 
Mall, the ceremony being privately performed by 
a priest from the Austrian Embassy. Then on No- 
vember 25th he was married to the Duchess of Cleve- 
land, also privately, at her house in Bond Street, 
to which she had moved after leaving Arhngton Street. 
The priest on this occasion was Father Remigius, 
alias Deviett, chaplain to the Portuguese Ambassador. 
Two allusions to Feilding's marriage to the Duchess 
are to be found in the correspondence of the day. 
One is in a letter written by Lady Wentworth to 



300 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

her son, Lord Raby, then in Berlin, on December 14th, 
1705. " The old Boe Feelding is maryed to the 
Dutchis of Cleevland," she says, " and she owns 
it and has kist the Queen's hand sinc[e]." This is 
interesting as showing that the scandalous Duchess 
was not debarred from the Court of Anne now. 

The other letter was sent on December 17th to 
Dr. Atterbury by Lord Stanhope, son of the Lord 
Chesterfield of whom we have heard so much earlier 
in this book. " I had a letter from you this day," 
wrote Stanhope, " with a diverting one enclosed 
from a mad imaginary general, who is so happy as to 
be fond of that which my father, and all the world 
besides himself, were weary of long ago. I think him 
(as Dryden says of the last Duke of Buckingham) a 
happy madman ; since he can at this time be pleased 
with Cleveland . . . without so much as calling back 
the idea of quantum mutatus ab illo.^^ 

After his second wedding the Beau transferred 
his abode to the Duchess's house, though secretly 
keeping up his lodgings in Pall Mall, in order to 
meet the supposed Anne Deleau there. Toward 
the Duchess of Cleveland he soon showed himself 
in his true colours. " She payed dear for her fancy," 
says Boyer ; " for he used her very ill, and not being 
content with the plentiful allowance she made him 
out of her constant income of a hundred pounds 
a week, paid her out of the Post Office, he would 
have divested her of all, even to the necessary furniture 
of her house, had not her sons, and particularly the 
Duke of Grafton, her grandson, stood by her." 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 301 

But worse was to come. In May 1906 Grafton 
came to her and informed her that two women had 
been to his house and told him that Feilding had 
already made a marriage sixteen days before the 
Bond Street ceremony. It is with no wonder that 
we read in Luttrell on May nth : " The Dutchesse 
of Cleeveland is given over by her physitians." The 
violence of the old lady's rage now may be imagined 
from what Mrs. Manley tells of her state on the 
occasion of Churchill's refusal of a loan. 

The house in Bond Street cannot have been a 
pleasant home for the Beau after the discovery of 
his perfidy, and it is difficult to believe that he con- 
tinued to reside in it while the Duchess remained there. 
Before the end of June we find him prematurely 
consigned to the grave. Luttrell on the 29th writes : 
" Handsome Feilding, who married the Dutchesse 
of Cleveland, died yesterday." So far was this from 
being a fact, however, that on July 24th Feilding 
was committed to Newgate, the Duchess having 
" sworn the peace against him." It is clearly to 
this that Lady Wentworth alludes when on July 
29th she writes to Lord Raby from Twickenham : 
" Just as I came down hear I hard that the Dutchis 
of Cleeveland's Feeldin was dead, and she in great 
greef for him ; but it was no such thing, for instead 
of that she has gott him sent to Newgate for thretning 
to kill her twoe sons for taking her part, when he 
beet her and broack open her closset doar and toock 
fower hundred pd. out. Thear is a paper put out 
about it. He beat her sadly and she cryed out murder 



302 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

in the street out of the windoe, and he shott a blunder- 
bus at the people." 

On the day after his committal to Newgate, how- 
ever, Feilding was released on bail, he finding ^looo 
and the Duke of Devonshire and Earl of Denbigh 
^500 each. During his brief absence in jail the 
Duchess seized the opportunity of leaving Bond 
Street and seeking the protection of either her son 
Northumberland or her grandson Grafton. On 
his release he published the following remarkable 
advertisement in a broadside, of which an example 
has been preserved among the Harleian MSS. : 

" Where as the most Noble and most Illustrious 
Princess Barbara, Dutchess of Cleveland, did on 
the 25 th of July, or thereabouts, make a spontaneous 
Retreat from the Dwelling House of her Husband, 
Major-General Robert Feilding, near Piccadilly, taking 
with her, or sending and conveying before her Elope- 
ment, Goods, consisting of Money, Plate, Jewels, 
and other things, amounting to the Value of Three 
Thousand Pounds, or upwards, the Goods and 
Chattels of her said Husband, and which was own'd 
by herself to be removd by her Order, with a solemn 
promice of restoring the said Goods the next day ; 
But so it is, that as yet there has been no Restoration 
made of any thing : And notwithstanding her Husband 
did, by the Earl of Denbeigh, invite her the said 
Dutchess to return to her Co-habitation with him, 
she has absolutely refus'd it, by alledging, that she 
had put herself under the Protection of her Children ; 
and that she defy'd her said Husband, and would 
Justify her Elopement. For these causes, and others 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 303 

no less considerable, her Husband thinks fit solemnly 
to give Notice to all Tradesmen and others, upon 
no Account whatever to Trust, or give Credit, to 
the said Dutchess, whose debts he will in no wise 
satisfy." 

The sublime impudence of Beau Feilding is ad- 
mirably illustrated in this claim on the property 
of the woman he had deceived so grossly. But 
Nemesis was awaiting him with no slow foot now. 
On September 3rd, as Luttrell tells, " the bench of 
justices at Hicks Hall granted a warrant against 
Handsome Feilding for beating a person since he 
was bound over." Who was the person assaulted 
on this occasion we do not know. Next, on October 
4th he was " taken out of his coach by baylifs, near 
Temple Bar, and carried to Newgate for debt." 
Then on October 23rd, the first day of the legal 
term, the Duchess appeared in the Court of Queen's 
Bench and preferred an information against him for 
abusing her. " It's said," adds Luttrell, " the grand 
jury at Hicks Hall have found a bill against him for 
having two wives, for which he is to be tried next 
session at the Old Bailey." ^ 

The Duchess of Cleveland, in her fury, was not 
content to proceed against the evildoer in one way 

1 A newsletter of November 2nd, 1706, says : "The Duchess of 
Cleveland was introduced by Grafton, Northumberland, and Quarendon 
the first day of the term, when for continuing of the bail she swore she 
feared personal hurt, and for a proof of her not having malice she said 
she had married him who had nothing. Feilding answered that she 
had no malice when she married him, but his having now ^^50 per 
week, etc. However, his bail was continued.' 



304 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

only. She was determined to make him suffer all 
the ignominy possible. She therefore had him 
arraigned at the Old Bailey for felony, while she 
sued in Doctors Commons for divorce and nullity 
of marriage. The first case is a celebrated example 
of a bigamy trial two hundred years ago, and the 
report of it throws an immense amount of light vipon 
one side of life in those days. We shall endeavour 
to give enough of it to make clear the conduct of 
Feilding, the Duchess of Cleveland, and Mary Wads- 
worth in this extraordinary affair. 

The trial opened on Wednesday, December 4th, 
1706, at the Sessions House in the Old Bailey, the 
indictment against Feilding being that he, on the 
9th day of November [1705], at the parish of St. 
James's, Westminster, took to wife one Mary Wads- 
worth, spinster, and the same Mary Wadsworth 
then and there had for his wife ; and that afterwards, 
viz. on the 25th day of the same month, at the parish 
of St. Martin's-in-the-Fields, did feloniously take 
to wife the most noble Barbara, Duchess of Cleveland 
(the said Mary Wadsworth his former wife, being 
then living), " against the peace of our Sovereign 
Lady the Queen, her crown and dignity, and against the 
form of the statute in that case made and provided." 

The counsel for the Queen were Mr. Raymond 
and Sir James Montague. Feilding perforce defended 
himself, the law not allowing him the assistance of 
counsel on such a charge. 

The important part of Montague's opening speech 
was as follows, slightly abbreviated here and there : 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 305 

" About a year ago there was a young lady left 
a widow by Mr. Deleau and reputed a great fortune. 
Mr. Feilding had a design upon this lady and in 
August 1705 applied himself to one Mrs. Streights 
to contrive some method how he might have access 
to this widow. Mrs. Streights had no acquaintance 
with her, but knew Mrs. Villars used to cut her hair. 
So they thought the best expedient was to make 
Mrs. Villars their friend, that by her interest he might 
have admittance to Mrs. Deleau ; not questioning 
but if once she had a sight of his very handsome 
person she would have the same affection for him 
that he had met with from other ladies. Mrs. Villars 
was promised ;^500 to bring this about ; and though 
she doubted whether she could ever accomplish 
it, yet by these means she might perhaps make a 
penny of it to herself. Therefore she promised Mrs. 
Streights to use her endeavour to serve the Major- 
General (meaning Mr. Feilding), though she could 
not be sure such an overture would be well received 
by Mrs. Deleau. But being acquainted with one 
Mary Wadsworth, who was somewhat hke the widow, 
she imagined it would be no difficult matter to set 
her up to represent Mrs. Deleau. And accordingly 
it was done, and Mr. Feilding proved so intent upon 
the matter that he went to Doctors-Commons to 
examine Mrs. Deleau's will, and found that she was 
left very considerable " — to the extent of ^^60,000, 
it was stated later in the trial. 

" Soon after he went to Tunbridge and after 
two or three days' stay there returned and called 
at Waddon, where Mrs. Deleau resided, with a 
pretence to see the house and gardens, but in reahty 
to see the widow. It happened that the lady would 



3o6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

not be seen herself, but her servants were permitted 
to show him the gardens, and he fancied that he had 
a sight of Mrs. Deleau too ; for, a kinswoman of 
her looking out of window into the garden, he con- 
cluded it could be nobody but Mrs. Deleau admiring 
Beau Feilding. About three days after his return 
from Tunbridge, he told Mrs. Villars of his calling 
at Waddon, and that he had acquainted the Duchess 
of Cleveland of the fine gardens that were there, 
which she expressed a great desire to see, and therefore 
directed Mrs. Villars to go in Her Grace's name to 
ask the favour of seeing the house and gardens. 
Accordingly Mrs. Villars went down to Waddon ; 
and Mrs. Deleau treated her very civilly and told 
her whenever Her Grace pleased she should see her 
house and gardens ; but as she was a widow she could 
not attend upon her. Though the Duchess was 
expected after this, she did not go, for indeed she 
did not know anything of the message. 

" The next time Mr. Feilding attempted to see 
Mrs. Deleau was at a horse-race at Banstead Downs, 
but he was again disappointed. After this he sent 
a letter to her house, but the servants when they 
saw the name to it, knowing the character of Mr. 
Feilding, threw it into the fire. 

" When Mrs. Villars found that the Duchess of 
Cleveland knew nothing of her being sent to Waddon 
and that it was only a contrivance of Mr. Feilding's 
to get an opportunity of seeing Mrs. Deleau, and 
that in truth he had never seen her, she resolved 
to play trick for trick with him and thereupon 
proposed the matter to Mary Wadsworth, whom 
Mr. Feilding did not know, and one that could not 
worst herself much by such an undertaking, whether 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 307 

it succeeded or not. Mrs. Wadsworth readily em- 
braced the offer, and thereupon Mrs. Villars went to 
Mr. Feilding and told him she had proposed the 
matter to Mrs. Deleau, who had at last given a 
favourable ear to it, and that she did not fear but 
if matters could be prudently managed his desires 
might be accomplished. 

" A little before Lord Mayor's Day, 1705, Mrs. 
Villars told Mr. Feilding that she had at length 
obtained of the lady a promise of an interview, 
and that she was shortly to bring her to his lodgings ; 
but he must take care not to let her know they were 
his lodgings or to give her the least cause to suspect 
he had anything to do there. Accordingly Mrs. 
Villars, the evening of Lord Mayor's Day, brought 
Mrs. Wadsworth, in a mourning coach and widow's 
dress, to the lodgings. He was not within at the 
time they came, but being sent for came soon after 
and was extremely complaisant. At length, in spite 
of the caution he had received, he could not forbear 
showing her his fine clothes and what furniture he 
had, and sent for Mrs. Margaretta Galli to sing to her, 
and pretended that he was extremely taken with her, 
and that nothing would satisfy him but being married 
that night. She, with a seeming modesty, checked 
his forward behaviour and made a show of going 
away in displeasure ; but before they parted he pre- 
vailed on her to promise not to put off their marriage 
longer than Wednesday seven-night. 

" The appointed day being come, to make him the 
more eager and shun suspicion through too much 
forwardness on her part, the lady put it off again 
till Friday, November 9th; at which time Mrs. 
Villars and she came again to Mr. Feilding's lodgings, 



3o8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

where he received them with extraordinary transports 
of joy. The lady still putting him off and making 
as if she would be gone, Mr. Feilding, to make things 
sure, locking them in his apartment, drove in a hackney- 
coach directly to Count Gallas's, the Emperor's 
envoy, in Leicester Fields, and returned with one 
Don Francisco Drian, a Popish priest [attached to 
the Roman Catholic chapel in the Fields], styled 
The Father in Red, on account of a red habit he 
wore. On his arrival the marriage took place." 

Counsel went on to say that after the wedding- 
night the supposed widow Deleau went away with 
Mrs. Villars to Waddon, as Feilding thought, to 
which place he addressed letters to her, calHng her 
The Countess of Feilding, best of wives, etc. She 
visited him again twice at his lodgings before No- 
vember 25th (the reason for this secrecy being that 
the heiress's father must not know of the marriage, 
having a portion of her fortune in his hands). Once 
more after his marriage with the Duchess of Cleve- 
land she paid him a visit. " During all this time 
he made her presents, furnished her with money, 
and treated her as his wife, until the cheat was found 
out, which was in the following May. Then finding 
how he had been served, that instead of marrying 
a fortune of ^60,000 he had been imposed upon 
and had married one not worth so many farthings, 
he discarded her in great wrath." 

The first and principal witness called for the 
prosecution was Mrs. Villars, who bore out what 
had been said about her share in the business, and 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 309 

stated that when the supposed Mrs. Deleau had 
paid her second visit after the wedding-night, Feilding 
kept writing to her to come again soon, as he was 
going to leave his lodgings altogether and be with 
Her Grace the Duchess of Cleveland.^ Mrs. Wads- 
worth therefore came ; but neither Feilding nor his 
man-servant were at the lodgings. The latter, 
however, came in later and said he had brought 
his master's night-gown and slippers from the Duchess 
of Cleveland's. Apparently this did not open Mary 
Wadsworth's eyes yet, for Mrs. Villars explained thus 
the manner in which she was enlightened with regard 
to the Beau's proceedings. At the beginning of 
May 1706 Mrs. Wadsworth sent to him for money, 
which, of course, betrayed to him, with his know- 
ledge of the Deleau will, that she could not be what 
she had pretended to be. He thereupon sent for 
Mrs. Villars to come to the Duchess of Cleveland's. 
When she arrived he demanded to have his presents 
returned, beat her, and taking " a thing made of 

1 In the "Articles exhibited against Robert Feilding, Esq.," in the 
case in Doctors Commons, the 24th Item says that, after the marriage 
with Mary Wadsworth, " the said Robert Feilding, Esq. did tell and 
declare to the said Mary his Wife, that the most noble Barbara, 
Duchess of Cleaveland, had settled all, or the greatest Part of her 
Estate on him the said Robert. And that if she heard of his aforesaid 
Marriage, he feared she might alter her Mind, or retract what she had 
done, and not be so kind to him. The said Robert, for the Reasons 
aforesaid, desired that his Marriage to the said Mary his wife might 
be kept private." In the fifth of the seven letters to Mary Wadsworth 
after her marriage, put in as evidence against Feilding at both trials, he 
writes : " I have not lain at my lodgings since I saw my dear wife ; 
and this week shall leave them altogether, to lye at Her Grace's. 
However, I shall always keep the conveniency to meet you there." 



3IO MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

steel at one end and a hammer at the other," vowed 
that if she would not unsay what she said of his 
marriage with the false widow Deleau he would slit 
her nose off ! According to the Articles against 
him in the second case, Feilding " did beat and abuse 
her in a most barbarous and cruel way." He also 
sent for Mary Wadsworth, whose real identity he 
had now discovered, to meet him at the lodge at 
Whitehall, also called Whitehall Gate. What hap- 
pened here is described by one of the subsequent 
witnesses as follows : " Mr. Feilding came to White- 
hall Gate in a chariot, he lit out of it. There was a 
hackney-coach brought two women ; one of these 
women got out of the coach and came up to M'" 
Feilding. Mr. Feilding called her ' Bitch.' The lady 
called him ' Rogue ' and said she was his lawful wife. 
At that, Mr Feilding having a stick, he punched it 
at her ; it happened upon her mouth and made her 
teeth bleed. He ordered the sentry to keep her till 
he was gone, and he would give him a crown." It 
was in revenge for this brutality that Mary Wads- 
worth and Mrs. Villars paid that visit to the Duke of 
Grafton of which we have already heard, and so revealed 
the true state of affairs to the Duke's grandmother. 

After some other people, including the real Mrs. 
Deleau, had been put into the box to establish the 
case for the prosecution, Boucher, Feilding's man 
at the time of the two weddings, was examined. 
From his evidence, given in true valet style and 
wonderfully modern in its ring, in spite of the 
two hundred years which have elapsed since these 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 311 

events took place, it appeared that soon after No- 
vember 25th he " understood by some of the Duchess 
of Cleveland's servants that Mr. Feilding was married 
to my Lady Duchess." Yet " about or on the 5th 
of December, says he, ' Boucher, get my lodgings 
in order again, for I expect Mrs. Villars and the lady 
to be there ' ; which accordingly I did. I was sent 
from the Duchess of Cleveland's with his night- 
gown, cap, and slippers. Mrs. Villars and the lady 
came accordingly that night, and had a boiled chicken 
for supper." The lady stayed the night and went away 
next morning in a hackney-coach. This was the 
last time Boucher saw her at his master's lodgings. 

There is much that is amusing in the course of 
examination of the various minor witnesses, but 
considerations of space do not permit the quotation 
here of what is outside the limits of our story. Two 
short passages, however, may be permitted to intrude. 
Mrs. Martin, sister of Mrs. Heath, Feilding's Pall 
Mall landlady, was called to corroborate the circum- 
stances of the Wadsworth wedding, having been 
present in the house at the time. The following 
dialogue occurred : 

Counsel : " Did you ever see any body come 
whilst they were there, in an extraordinary habit, red 
gown, &c. ? " 

Mrs. Martin : " There was a tall man knocked at 
the door in a long gown, blue facing, and fur cap, with 
a long beard." 

Counsel : " Do you remember the supper that night ? " 

Mrs. Martin : " I remember a dish of pickles." 



312 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

May we be allowed to wonder why ? 

Mrs. Heath herself, who said that Major-General 
Feilding took lodgings at her house " about the 
beginning of October last was a twelve-month," 
when asked whether she had heard or believed that 
Feilding and Mary Wadsworth were married, replied : 
" I did not believe it was a marriage but a conversion ; 
because his man came down into the parlour and 
asked for salt and water and rosemary ; which oc- 
casioned these words. ' Lord,' said I, ' I fancy they 
are making a convert of this woman ' ; because they 
said it was a priest above." 

When it came to Feilding's turn to defend him- 
self, he rested his case upon two points ; first, the 
bad character and untrustworthiness of Mrs. Villars ; 
and second, that Mrs. Wadsworth was married before, 
to one Bradby — a Fleet marriage. When he produced 
his witnesses, the counsel for the prosecution replied 
that they had no occasion to defend Mrs. Villars's 
reputation, which they did not pretend was very 
good. They could, indeed, hardly do that, seeing that 
she had been in the Bridewell on one occasion. But 
they insisted that Feilding had been imposed on and 
had married Mary Wadsworth. As for his plea 
of an earlier marriage on her part, they pointed 
out that all he had adduced was a register-book 
from the Fleet, in which the supposed marriage 
with Bradby was entered in a different hand from 
the rest of the entries ; no Bradby, no witnesses 
to the ceremony, and not even the writer of the 
entry ! Great use was made of Feilding's own letters 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 313 

(far from decent, it may be remarked) to " Anne 
Countess of Feilding " at Waddon — Anne being 
the Christian name of Mrs. Deleau, whom he beheved 
Mary Wadsworth to be. 

Mr. Justice Powel, at the end of a long summing 
up, made the following remarks to the jury : " Gentle- 
men, it is a very great charge upon Mr. Feilding, 
it is true, if there be evidence to maintain it. It 
does not really depend upon Mrs. Villars's evidence ; 
for if her evidence were to stand alone no credit 
should be given to it. But as it is supported by con- 
curring evidence, I leave it with you whether it be 
not sufficient to find Mr. Feilding guilty. But if 
you think that Mrs. Wadsworth's marriage to Bradby 
is proved sufficiently, then although you think Mr. 
Feilding's marriage with Mrs. Wadsworth sufficiently 
proved, yet you are to find for the defendant." 

The jury having withdrawn for some time brought 
in Feilding guilty of the felony of which he stood 
indicted. Hereupon it is added in Cases of Divorce : 

" Mr. Feilding (in case he was found guilty) had 
obtained the Queen's warrant to suspend execution 
of the sentence ; and then by his counsel took ex- 
ception to the indictment, and moved in arrest of 
judgment ; but they were answered by the Council 
for the Queen. But Mr. Feilding having obtained 
a suspension of the execution, the judges, by a cur 
advisare vult (as the form is) suspended giving judg- 
ment till the next sessions, and accepted bail of Mr. 
Feilding then and there to appear." 

At the next sessions Feilding's counsel waived 



314 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

their exception, and on his being asked what he had 
to say why the Court should not proceed to judgment 
he " craved the benefit of his clergy." ^ Then judg- 
ment was given, the usual penalty being imposed, 
which was that he should be burnt in his hand. 
As, however, Feilding had the Queen's warrant to 
suspend execution, he was admitted to bail. The 
cruel sentence was never carried out. Queen Anne 
exercising her clemency and pardoning him. Possibly 
she thought that he had suffered enough for his 
offence in being dragged into such unpleasant pub- 
licity at the Old Bailey. Moreover, there was still 
pending against him the other suit brought by the 
Duchess. 

The proceedings in Doctors Commons resulted 
in sentence of the Court being read on May 23rd, 
1707. There were present at the reading the Dukes 
of Northumberland and Grafton, the Earls of Lich- 
field, Sussex, Jersey, etc., to see the triumph of the 
vindictive old lady over the Beau. The sentence 
was to the effect that Robert Feilding and Mary 
Wadsworth, being free from all contract and promise 
of marriage with any other when they contracted 
and solemnised marriage on November 9th, 1705, 
were man and wife ; that, Robert Feilding not having 
the fear of God before his eyes and having on No- 
vember 25 th, 1705, contracted a pretended marriage 
with the most noble lady, Barbara Duchess of Cleve- 

^ " The privilege of exemption from the sentence which, in the case 
of certain offences, might be pleaded on his first conviction by every 
one who could read." — Oxford English Dictionary. 



THE DUCHESS AND BEAU FEILDING 315 

land, this pretended marriage or rather show of 
marriage was, from the beginning, void and of no 
force in law ; and that therefore the said most noble 
lady " was and is free from any bond of marriage 
with the said Robert Feilding, and had and hath 
the liberty and freedom of marrying with any other 
person." 

Two days later Feilding renounced all right of 
appeal from the sentence, " for," as he wrote to his 
proctor, " I shall proceed no farther therein." One 
might have thought that the Duchess would now 
rest content ; but she claimed that the Court should 
deliver up to her a gold ring (the posy ring, with the 
motto Tibi soli, with which Feilding had wedded the 
supposed Anne Deleau) and the seven letters addressed 
to " the Countess of Feilding." Why she should 
have these is not evident. Nevertheless, the Court 
assented, and ring and letters were handed over to 
Her Grace. Possibly her thirst for vengeance was now 
at last satisfied. At any rate, she troubled Feilding 
no more. He survived her about three years, but 
never recovered from the blow she had dealt him. 
The memoir of him in Cases of Divorce for Several 
Causes denies the Tatler''s " conclusion of his venting 
his dolors in a garret," saying that " his fortune never 
threw him so low as to be obliged to mount so very 
high in his abode." Nevertheless it admits that 
" from this time the affairs of our heroe declined 
from bad to worse, till at last his creditors were 
pleased to bring their actions upon him, against 
which his only refuge remained of putting himself 



3i6 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

into the Fleet, where the scene changed from gallantry 
to drunkery, which soon brought him to his end." 
" Drunkery," it appears from the same authority, 
had never been a vice of the Beau's in early life. 
Drink and gambling alike he had avoided. 

Feilding did not die in the Fleet prison. He suc- 
ceeded in compounding with his creditors, and went 
to live in lodgings in Scotland Yard — doubtless the 
garret to which the Tatler refers — until his death 
on May 12th, 171 2. His chief consolation at the 
end of his life was a reconciliation with Mary Wads- 
worth. He left her the sole executrix of his will, 
calling her " my dear and loving wife Mary Feilding," 
and devised to her nearly the whole of what remained 
of his estate, while to his brother, nephew, and two 
married sisters he left a shilling apiece. 

At the end of a work entitled An Historical Account 
of the Life, Birth, Parentage, and Conversation of that 
celebrated Beau, Handsome Fealding is to be found an 
" epitaph ", which may be quoted as an example of 
what some thought humorous in those days : — 

" If F— g is Dead, 

And lies under this Stone, 
That he is not alive, 

You may bet two to one ; 
But if he's alive, 

And do's not lie here, 
Let him live till he's hang'd. 

For no Man do's care." 



CHAPTER XVI 

LAST YEARS AND DEATH 

AS the result of the Feilding trial, the Duchess 
of Cleveland, at the age of sixty-six, was 
declared free from any bond of marriage with the 
Beau and at liberty to marry again. But Her Grace 
is not recorded to have shown any inclination to 
try her fortune a third time. Perhaps at last even 
she felt it to be time to rest. She withdrew from the 
heart of town, and retired to the then quiet Middlesex 
village of Chiswick, taking with her the little Charles 
Hamilton, her doubly illegitimate grandson. Strange 
to say, of all the children who had the fortune or 
misfortune to be brought up by her, with the ex- 
ception of Charlotte Countess of Lichfield, Charles 
Hamilton was the only one to do her credit. On 
his grandmother's death he was sent to France and 
put under the care of Charles, Earl of Middleton, 
whom James H had made Secretary of State be- 
fore the Revolution and, after reappointing him to 
that post in exile, created shortly before his own death 
Earl of Monmouth. As has been said, Hamilton was 
with his father at the fatal duel with Mohun in 171 2. 
Indeed he himself crossed swords on the occasion 
with MacCartney, Mohun^s second, and was arrested 

317 



3i8 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

and made one of the principal witnesses at Mohun's 
trial. On his release from Newgate, after a vain 
attempt to obtain satisfaction from MacCartney, 
whom he accused of foul play against his father, 
he took up his residence permanently abroad, where 
he bore the title of the Count of Arran, and devoted 
himself to literature. He married and had a son, 
called like himself Charles Hamilton, who wrote 
from notes collected by his father a work entitled 
Transactions during the Reign of Queen Anne. 

With this grandchild, then, the Duchess of Cleveland 
went to Chiswick. Here she spent the last two years 
of her life. Researches into the question of her place 
of abode there have not succeeded in proving con- 
clusively where it was. The Rev. L. W. T. Dale, 
who was vicar of Chiswick at the time when Steinman 
was writing his Memoir, could find no record of her 
residence in the church rate-books, so that apparently 
she could only have been the occupier of a furnished 
house. In the years 1723-8 the Duke of Cleveland 
and Southampton (Charles Fitzroy, on her death, 
added her title to his own) figures as a contributor 
to the church-rates to the extent of 30s., from which 
it seems as if he continued the occupancy of his 
mother's house. Mr. Dale favoured Walpole House, 
which is still standing in the Mall at Chiswick, as the 
home of the Duchess. 

Before the time when Mr. Dale communicated his 
suggestion to the author of the Memoir of Barbara 
Duchess of Cleveland, all connection of the famous 
lady with Walpole House seems to have been for- 




Frotn a fihotogi-a/i/i by Eincjy Walker, after a painting by Sir iioii/rey Kncllcr 
in tbc National Portrait Crallcrv 



BARBARA VILLIERS, COUNTESS OF CASTLEMAINE 
AND DUCHESS OF CLEVELAND 



LAST YEARS AND DEATH 319 

gotten. Faulkner in his History and Antiquities of 
Brentford, Ealing, and Chiswick, published in 1845, 
merely says of the place : " Walpole House on the 
Mall takes its name from having been the residence 
of the noble family of that name, several members of 
whom are buried in the church. About sixty years 
ago it was occupied by Mrs. Rigby as a boarding- 
house, and here Mr. Daniel O'Connell resided for 
several years whilst he was studying for the bar. 
This family mansion has lately been put into a state 
of repair, and is now occupied by Mr. Allen as a 
classical and commercial academy." 

Walpole House has been identified with the Misses 
Pinkerton's select establishment for young ladies in 
Vanity Fair, although in Thackeray's description 
extraneous features have been introduced which are 
not to be traced in the original. Had Thackeray 
known of the notorious Duchess's residence in the 
place, could he have housed those chaste scholastic 
ladies there ? — particularly when, as a modern writer, 
Mr. Allan Fea, tells us, the ghost of Her Grace is 
supposed still to haunt the house ! 

There is little more to be told about the old 
Duchess of Cleveland. At Chiswick she lived without 
any scandal that has come down to us. When she 
moved thither she was about the same age as Catherine 
the Great of Russia when she died, and she may be 
said to have shown herself fully a peer of that ab- 
normal woman — who like her was branded vi'ith the 
name of " Messalina " — on the infamous side of her 
character. Catherine remained a victim of her 



320 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

extraordinary mania to the last. In the case of Barbara 
there is no evidence. Her presence at Court to kiss 
Queen Anne's hand in December 1705 argues a 
certain acquired respectabihty at the age of sixty-six, 
but we hear of no repentant death-bed such as her 
rivals of Portsmouth and Adazarin made. In fact, 
though she would have been an interesting penitent, 
no one apparently took the trouble to record any- 
thing at all about her death-bed except Boyer, and 
his account is meagre. Having referred to the Feilding 
case, he says : 

" The Duchess, having lived about two years 
after this, at length fell ill of a dropsie, which swelled 
her gradually to a monstrous bulk and in about three 
months' time put a period to her life, at her house at 
Cheswick, in the county of A^Iiddlesex, in the 69th 
year of her age." 

The actual date of the death was Sunday, October 
9th. The funeral took place at Chiswick parish church 
four days after, being carried out by the Duke of 
Grafton " in a manner privately," Boyer says. The 
same writer gives the names of the pall-bearers as 
" the Dukes of Ormond and Hamilton, the Earls of 
Essex and Grantham, the Earl of Lisford and the 
Lord Berkley of Stratton." 

The choice of pall-bearers seems rather curious. 
James, second Duke of Ormonde, was the grandson 
of Barbara's old opponent, whom she had in her 
rage hoped to see hanged. Hamilton was her 
illegitimate son-in-law, if we may so call him. 



LAST YEARS AND DEATH 321 

Algernon Capel, second Earl of Essex, inherited 
his title as eldest surviving son of the man who 
left the Treasury in 1679 rather than pay the 
j^25,ooo claimed from it by the Duchess of Cleve- 
land. Grantham — Henry d'Auverquerque, son of a 
naturalised Dutchman who fought under the Prince 
of Orange — must have owed his acquaintance with 
her to the young Ormonde, whose sister. Lady 
Henrietta Butler, he married. By the Earl of " Lis- 
ford " Boyer appears to mean Frederic William de 
Roye de la Rochefoucauld, one of William's supporters 
at the Battle of the Boyne, and created by him Earl 
of Lifford in the Irish peerage. His connection with 
the Duchess of Cleveland cannot be traced. As for 
Lord Berkeley of Stratton — William the fourth Baron, 
who succeeded to his father's title after both his elder 
brothers had borne it in turn — he, like Ormonde and 
Essex, might have been supposed to have hereditary 
reasons for hostility rather than friendship toward 
her late Grace ; for we have seen how she and the 
first Baron had been at variance about a large sum of 
money. With Barbara, however, as with many of her 
kind, enmity was usually a caprice. She could be a 
most bitter foe for a moment, and then forget and 
forgive. Only against Clarendon and Southampton 
does she seem to have cherished a lifelong hatred ; 
and their attitude made all approach impossible. 

By her will, which was dated August nth, 1709, 
the Duchess of Cleveland made her grandson the 
Duke of Grafton residuary legatee. She had but 
little to leave except her property at Nonsuch. 



322 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

This went to Charles Fitzroy together with her title 
of Cleveland. In 1722 the Duke sold the remains of 
Nonsuch, already ruined by his mother soon after she 
acquired it. With the alienation of this property, the 
extinction of the Cleveland and Southampton peerage 
on the death of Charles's son William in 1774, and the 
pulling down of Cleveland House in the middle of last 
century, disappeared the last visible traces of the mul- 
titudinous gifts to his mistress from King Charles II. 

The Duchess was buried in Chiswick Church, 
but her tomb is unknown, as no stone was raised to 
mark the place. Perhaps her descendants thought 
that no monument was required beyond the memory 
of her name which is preserved in literature. And 
who can say that they were wrong ? Barbara Villiers 
is scarcely likely to be forgotten while the combination 
of a face of eminent beauty and the heart of an utter 
rake has any attraction for weak mankind. 



NOTES 



Page 1, line 3. In a poem entitled A Faithful Catalogue of our most 
Eminent Ninnies (1686). 

Page I, line 6. Burnet, History of My Orfn Time, Supplement 
published in 1902, p. 65. Miss H. C. Foxcroft, who edits the 
Supplement, assigns this fragment to the year 1683. 

P. I, 1. II. Some sentences of this passage in the History are 
quoted elsewhere. For the benefit of those who are not familiar with 
it, however, it is here given in full : " The ruin of his reign, and of 
all his affairs, was occasioned chiefly by his delivering himself up at 
his first coming over to a mad range of pleasure. One of the race of 
the Viiliers, then married to Palmer, a papist, soon after made earl 
of Castlemaine, who afterwards, being separated from him, was 
advanced to be duchess of Cleveland, was his first and longest mistress, 
by whom he had five children. She was a woman of great beauty, 
but most enormously vicious and ravenous, foolish but imperious, ever 
uneasy to the king, and always carrying on intrigues with other men, 
while yet she pretended she was jealous of him. His passion for her, 
and her strange behaviour towards him, did so disorder him, that often 
he was not master of himself, nor capable of minding business, which, 
in so critical a time, required great application ; but he did then so 
entirely trust the earl of Clarendon that he left all to his care, and 
submitted to his advices as to so many oracles." — 1897 edition, 
Vol. I, pp. 168-9. 

P. 2, 1. 23. Letter of June 25th, 1745, in Clarendon Press 
edition oi Walpole's Letters (1905), Vol. II, p. 108. 

P. 2, 1. 29. We should perhaps add Boyer, who, in his obituary 
notice of the Duchess of Cleveland in Annals of Queen Anne's Reign, 
after speaking of her beauty, says : " Her other qualities of good 
nature, liberality, &c., we shall not here expatiate upon." He has, 
however, just called her "this second Messalina." 

P. 3, 1. 13. Reported from Pope's conversation, in Spence's 
Anecedetes. 

323 



324 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 6, I. 24. Clarendon, History of the Rebellion (1826 edn.), VII, 
1 5 1-2. 

P. 7, 1. 23. Aubrey, History of Surrey ^ I, 47. 

P. 13,1. 19. Letters of Philips Second Earl of Chesierfeld {\%zci), 
pp. 77-81. 

P. 14, 1. 22. lb., 86. 

P. 15, 1.9, /^., 87. 

P. 16, 1. 4. lb., 88. 

P. 17, 1. 5. Pepys, Diary, March 19th, 1665, ^"^ April 6th, 
1668, has even worse to tell of the lady. And Cosmo de' Medici, 
when he visited England in March i66g, wrote in a letter to a friend : 
" I am truly not the man to be taken by the charms of a Lady 
Carnegie [that was then her title], nor could I ever submit to participate 
in such widely distributed favours." 

This same Cosmo de' Medici admired Lady Castlemaine sufficiently 
to commission Lely to paint her portrait, along with those of three 
other Caroline beauties, to be sent to his home in Tuscany. Later he 
had a collection of sixteen pictures of beautiful English women. The 
Historical MSS. Commission, Report 12, Appendix, Part g, mentions 
among the MSS. of Mr. R. W. Ketton an unsigned one headed 
"Concerning Florence" and dated October 3rd, 1693. In this the 
writer speaks of seeing the sixteen pictures at the Poggio Imperiale. 
" The Dutchess of Cleaveland's," he says, " obscured all the rest." 

P. 17, 1. 6. Letters, 88-9. 

P. 17, 1. 20. lb., 90. 

P. 18, 1. 3. lb., 93. 

P. 18,1. 9. lb., 93-4. 

P. 18, 1. 12. "Cromwell and his partisans" had "shut up and 
seiz'd on Spring Garden, which till now had been the usual rendezvous 
for the ladys and gallants at this season,"— Evelyn, 'Diary, May loth, 
1654. With regard to Hyde Park, Mr, Wheatley, in his edition of 
Pepys, notes that in 1656 there was published a work entitled "The 
Yellow Book, or a serious letter sent by a private Christian to the 
Lady Consideration the first of May 1656, which she is desired to 
communicate in Hide Park to the Gallants of the Times a little after 
sunset " ! 

P. 18, 1. 29. Letters, 91. 

P. 19, 1. 10. lb., 92. 



NOTES 325 

P. 19, 1. 22. lb., 96-7. Chesterfield calls her Lady Essex ; but, 
as a matter of fact, Lord Capel, her husband, was not Earl of Essex 
until 1 661. 

P. 20, 1. 7. Letters, 99. 

P. 20, 1. 31. lb., prefatory memoir, p. 1 9. 

P. 22, I. 1. The capital letters with which Boyer and his con- 
temporaries garnish their writings will usually be omitted from hence- 
forward. 

P. 24, 1. 12. It is from the locality of this, probably the bride's 
parish church, that Lord Anglesea's house is placed in the neighbour- 
hood of Ludgate Hill, which fits in well with the appointment made 
by the two girls in their letter to Chesterfield on p, 17. 

P. 24, 1. 16. Jesse, Memoirs of the Court of England during the 
Reign of the Stuarts, IV, 85. 

P. 24, 1. 3 1 . Memoirs of the Court of Charles II by Count Gramont, 
chap. VI. 

P. 26,1. 13. Letters, 102-3. 
P. 27, 1. 8. Ib.^ 103. 
P. 27, 1. 28. lb., 104. 

P. 28, 1. 17. Or January i6|2, ^s it is written to show that at 
this time the year was still commonly reckoned to begin on March 
25th, although many persons already made January ist the first day, 
as Mr. Wheatley points out that Pepys did. See his first footnote 
to the text of the Diary. 

P. 28, 1. 25. In Rugge's Diurnal, which gives an account of the 
duel. 

P. 29, 1. 5. Letters, 105-6. 

P. 29,1. 15. lb., 1 1 2-1 3. "Thenewse I have from England 
concerning your ladyship makes me doubt of everything ; and therefore 
let me entreate you to send mee your picture," etc. This news from 
England cannot have been, as the editor of the Chesterfield Letters 
supposes, " respecting the intimate connection between herself and 
King Charles " — unless the news came from Holland via England 
and referred to that meeting between Barbara and Charles of which 
Jesse and Mrs. Jameson speak. 

P. 29, 1. 29. Jesse, Memoirs, IV, 85. 

P. 30, 1. 1 8. Mrs. M. A. Everett Green, Calendar of State Tapers, 
Domestic Series, 1 660-1 661, p. 104. 



326 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 30, 1. 25. Diary i May 16th, 1660. 

P. 31, I. 7. Pepys certainly speaks as if the King only gained 
his way with the lady later. From the similarity of language it seems 
that Boyer, writing his obituary of the Duchess of Cleveland after her 
death in 1709, must have had the Williamite tract of 1690 before 
his eyes. Boyer says : " Whatever shews of piety this Prince made 
at Breda, in order to impose upon some Presbyterian divines that 
attended him there, it was confidently affirm'd that this lady was 
prepar'd for his bed the very first night he lay at Whitehall." The 
Secret History, p. 22, says : " Soon after he arrived in England, where 
he was received with all the pomp and splendour and all the demon- 
strations of joy that a nation could express, but then, as if he had left 
all his piety behind him in Holland, care was taken against the very 
first night that His Sacred Majesty was to lie at Whitehall to have the 
Lady Castlemain seduc'd from her loyalty to her husband and entic'd 
into the arms of the happily restored Prince." 

P. 32, 1. 24. Continuation of the Life of Edward, Earl of Clarendon 
(1827), I, pp. 353, 357-8. 

P. 34, 1. 4. Calendar of State Tapers {Domestic) 1 661-1662, 
p. 165. Another petition from Roger Palmer, dated March ?, 1662, 
asks for "the reversion after George, Earl of Norwich, and Hen. 
Wynne, of the secretaryship of the business and affairs of Wales, 
mortgaged by the Earl for ;^2 3,000, which debt was sold to the 
petitioner " {lb., p. 303). 

P. 35, 1. 10. Diary, October 14th, 1660. 

P. 35, 1, 19. Camden Society Publications, No. 39 (New Series), 
p. 26. 

P. 36, 1. 5. In an address to the London Topographical Society 
on May 6th, 191 1, Lord Welby discussed the site of the Cockpit, 
which, he said, formed a very important part of the "sporting ap- 
paratus " of Whitehall Palace and therefore gradually gave its name 
to the adjacent buildings. He assigned its location to the site now 
chiefly occupied by the rooms of the Permanent and Financial Secre- 
taries of the Treasury. During the interregnum first Cromwell and 
then Monk had their apartments in the Cockpit buildings. 

P. 37, 1. II. Lord Dartmouth, in his annotations to Burnet's 
History of My Otun Time, speaks of " the late Countess of Sussex, 
whom the King adopted for his daughter, though Lord Castlemaine 
always looked upon her to be his, and left her his estate when he died, 
but she was generally understood to belong to another, the old Earl of 
Chesterfield, whom she resembled very much both in face and person." 



NOTES 327 

p. 37, 1. 20. Letters, 1 16-18. 

P. 40, 1. I. Quoted by G. S. Steinman, Memoir of Barbara 
Duchess of Cleveland, p. 28. 

P. 42, 1. 13. Burnet, History, Supplement, pp. 65-6. 

P. 42, 1. 22. Clarendon, Continuatiofi, II, 172. 

P. 43, 1. 12. lb., II, 177. 

P. 43, 1. 29. A curious light is thrown upon the lady's opinion, a 
few years later, of the value of Irish peerages. In a letter in the 
collection of Sir R. Graham, dated February 20th, 1665, a certain 
George Walsh writes : " Ralph Sheldon . . . would marry Mrs. 
Win Wells provided the King would make him an Irish Viscount, 
which I suppose will not be denied, for (according to the Lady 
Castlemaine's estimation) that honour is not valued at above 1000/." 
H. M. C, Rep. 6, App. 

P. 44, 1. 6 . Boyer, Annals of Queen Anne's Reign, obituary of 
Lord Castlemaine. 

P. 44, footnote. Continuation, II, 171. 

P. 47, 1. 27. Chesterfield Letters, prefatory memoir, p. 21. 

P. 48, 1. 7. Letters, 123. 

P. 49, 1. 3. Lord Dartmouth's note on Burnet, History, I, part 2, 
p. 307. Legge, according to his son, never approved of the match. 

P. 49, 1. 6. Jesse, Memoirs, III, 387^, collects some interesting 
and amusingly diverse descriptions of Catherine of Braganza, the 
cruellest being Lord Dartmouth's : " She was very short and broad, 
of a swarthy complexion, one of her fore-teeth stood out, which held 
up her upper lip ; had some very nauseous distempers, besides ex- 
ceedingly proud and ill-favoured." 

P. 49, 1. 14. Continuation, II, 165. The remaining quotations in 
this chapter from Clarendon are all from the following pages of the 
Continuation, and the references will therefore be omitted. 

P. 51, 11. 1-6. Evelyn, May 30th, 1662 ; Pepys, May 25th, 1662. 

P. 52, 1. 23. Boycr, in his obituary notice of the Earl {^Annals, 
July 1705), explicitly states that he was "bred a Protestant" and 
only turned Roman Catholic after " the misfortunes of his bed." 
Burnet, as ue have seen, calls him " Palmer, a papist," as if he had 
always been one. 

P. 57, 1. 19. This letter appears in Lister's Life of Clarendon, 
III, 193. 



328 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 58, 1. 10. Letter of January i8th, 168 1. 

P. 61, 1. 16. Lansdowne MSS.f 1236. 

P. 70, 1. 13. Steinman, Memoir^ p. 205, from the Dorney Court 
Muniments. 

P. 74, 1. 33. Diary^ July 26th, 1662. 

P. 78, 1. 14. That is to say, unless he was really son of Colonel 
Robert Sidney, as many people believed, including apparently Evelyn. 

P. 79, I. 8. Coniinuatiotiy II, 252-3. 

P. 79, 1. 15. Pepys, Diary, December 24th, 31st, 1662. On 
October 27th Pepys believes "the Duke of York will not be fooled 
in this of three crowns." 

P. 79, 1. 17. 13., September 21st, 1662. 

P. 80, 1. 7. U., October 6th, 1662. 

P. 80, 1. 9. IL, November 3rd, 1662. 

P. 80, footnote. For one opinion of the real source of Berkeley's 
greatness see Pepys, Diary, December 15th, 1662. 

P. 81, I. 2. Continuation, II, 230. 

P. 81, 1. 10. Diary, October 24th, 1662. 

P. 81, 1. 22. Diary, October 31st, 1662. 

P. 81, footnote. Letter of June 8th, 1665. 

P. 82, 1, II. lb., December 15th, 1662. 

P. 82, I. 13. Life of the Duke of Ormonde, edition of 185 i, IV, 
p. 368. Carte's work was first published in 1735-6. 

P. 85, 1. 9. This letter from Cominges was first published by 
Lord Braybrooke in the Appendix to his edition of Pcpys's Diary. 
Concerning Cominges, see M. J. J. Jusserand, A French Ambassador at 
the Court of Charles II. 

P. 85, 1. 21. Diary, March 7th, 1663. 

P. 86, 1. 12, History, Supplement, p. 73. 

P. 87, 1. 8. Diary, January 19th, 1663. 

P. 87, 1. 30. Hatton Correspondence, I, 64. The editor, Sir E. 
Maunde Thompson, finds the story itself unsuitable for publication. 

P. 89, 1. 24. Pepys repeats the expression on December 26th, 
1667, when Frances, now Duchess of Richmond, was expected back 
at Court. 



NOTES 329 

P. 90, 1. 6. Diary, February 17th, 1663. 

P. 90, 1. 18. Letter of January 4th, 1663. 

P. 91, 1. 2. Pepys, Diary, February 25th, 1667. Cp. Allan 
Fea, Sotne Beauties of the Seventeenth Century, pp. 92-3. Mr. Fea 
points out that on the copper coins of Charles II Britannia reveals 
much of her leg ; and Frances Stewart was proud of her legs ! 

P. 91, 1. 5. Ruvigny to Louis XIV, June 25th, 1663. 

P. 92, 1. 20. Diary, March ist, 1663. 

P. 92, 1. 22. lb., April 4th, 1663. 

P. 92, 1. 30. Gramont Memoirs, chap. xi. 

P. 94, 1. 2. Diary, May nth, 1663. 

P. 94, 1. 27. lb., May 2nd, 1664. Cp. in the entry for May 
29th : " Mrs. Stewart, very fine and pretty, but far beneath my 
Lady Castlemaine." 

P. 97, 1. I. lb., July 22nd, 1663. 

P. 97, 1. 15. lb.. May loth, 1663. 

P. 98, 1. 7. lb., November 6th, 1663. 

P. 100, 1. I. The waters so7it vitriolees et par consequent excitent le 
vomissement, according to Cominges' Court news-sheet sent to Louis in 
August, 1663, quoted by M. Jusserand in the Appendix to his French 
Ambassador. But Burr, a hundred years later {An Historical Account of 
Tunbridge Wells, p. 72), declares their taste " pleasingly steely." 

P. 100, 1. 12. Diary, August nth, 1663. 

P. 102, 1. 3. Pepys, Diary, February 8th, 1663. One of Captain 
Ferrers' choice stories actually hints at this. 

P. 102, 11. 17^!^". Wood, Life and Times (edited by A. Clark), I, 
49 1 _^ Wood, after describing how the Mayor's Council discussed 
the reception of the royal visitors, writes : " [They determined] after 
that was done to present the Queene with the richest pair of gloves 
that could be made ; then a payre of gloves for the Duke of York and 
his dutchess ; then another paire to the . . ." Here follows a blank- 
Mr. Clark says it was suggested to him that the words to be supplied 
are " Countess of Castlemaine," or " King's mistress " : but he inclines, 
no doubt rightly, to the more charitable view that Wood had not been 
given the list of nobles to whom gloves were to be presented by the 
City. In his description of the presentation, Wood again writes : 
" Then the maior presented to the Queen a paire of rich gloves, and to 
. . .", with the same blank in the MS. 



330 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 103, 1. 8. See Mr. Clark's note on Wood, I, 494, 

P. 103, 1. 27. Diary, October 13th, 1663. 

P. 103, 1. 28. This was a not unfrequent occurrence at Whitehall. 
On December 7th of this same year Pepys tells of the greatest tide 
that was ever known in the Thames the night before and of " all 
Whitehall having been drowned." 

P. 104, I. 9, Diary, October 20th, 1663. 

P. 104, 1. 17. Letter of October 17th, 1663, quoted by Lord 
Braybrooke in his note on Pepys, October 17th, 1663. 

P. 104, 1. 18. Chap. VIII. 

P. 105, 1. 9. Jusserand, Appendix, pp. 220-1, where this letter 
from Cominges to Louis is dated November 1st, 1663. According to 
Lord Braybrooke it is dated October 25-29. Pepys on October 19th 
speaks of Catherine having " the extreme unction given her by the 
priests, who were so long about it that the doctors were angry " ; and 
by October 24th " the Queen is in a good way of recovery." 

P. 105, 1. 24. Diary, October 20th, 1663. 

P. 106, 1. 19. U., October 26th, 27th, 1663. 

P. 107, 1. 8. U., November 6th, 1663. 

P. 107, 1. 19. /^., November 9th, 1663. 

P. 108,1. 16. Cominges to Lionne, December 31st, 1663, quoted 
in Jusserand, Appendix, p. 224. 

P. 109, 1. 7. " Miss of State." Cp. Evelyn, Diary, January 9th, 
1662 : "The Earle of Oxford's CMisse (as at this time they began to 
call lewd women)." 

P. 109, 1. 14. The "great Stillingfleete " of Pepys, Diary, April 
1 6th, 1665. Oldmixon, who tells this story in his Critical History of 
England (1730), II, 276, anticipates events by making Stillingfleet 
already Dean of St. Paul's, and Barbara already Duchess of Cleveland. 

P. 109, I. 23. Letter of April 17th, 1664, quoted by Jusserand, 
p. 118. 

P. 1 10, 1. 20. Pepys, Diary, February 8th, 1664. On July loth 
it is recorded that Lady Castlcmaine gives Lord Sandwich her 
portrait — " and a most beautiful picture it is." 

P. 1 10, 1. 27. Diary, April ist, 1664. But contrast what is said 
on July I 5th. Pepys seems to think that Frances Stewart is one whose 
beauty varies with her dress. 



NOTES 331 

P. 1 10, 1. 29. lb., February ist, 1664. 

P. 111,1. 12. H.M.C. Rep. 6.y App. MSS. of Sir Henry Ingi/iy. 

P. 112, 1. 17. Steinman, in his Memoir of Barbara Duchess of Cleve- 
land, argues the case well for the change of apartments. He places 
the first set in that part of Whitehall Palace buildings which is 
" separated from the main buildings by ' the street,' a connecting link 
between King Street and Whitehall . . . and enclosed at either end 
by a gate "; i.e. in the Cockpit buildings, on ground now covered by the 
Treasury. It is here that in Vertue's map of 1747, based on John 
Fisher's survey of 1680, is marked "Countess of Castlemain's 
kitchen." It may be noted that this site does not answer very well to 
Pepys's " chamber in Whitehall next the King's own " {Diary, April 
25th, 1663, as quoted on p. 93 above), for not only "the street," but 
also the Privy Garden separated the Cockpit buildings from those in 
which the King and Queen lived ; but perhaps we must treat Pepys's 
description as merely a loose one. As for the apartments over " the 
hither-gate," there is no doubt as to situation of the Holbein gate- 
house at the northern end of " the street " opening into Whitehall, 
close to the modern Horse Guards. Steinman writes {Secorid Addenda, 
p. 2) : "That it had now fallen to the use of Lady Castlemaine is 
clearly shown, and this fact goes far to assure us that she had sometime 
before removed from her original suite of apartments on the west side 
of the Street to those of her northern neighbour, whence, we may 
readily believe, it might be approached by her Ladyship without 
venturing her fair person in the air." 

We cannot, however, feel sure : (i) that Lady Castlemaine did not 
occupy the gatehouse apartments from the first, for it adjoined the 
Cockpit buildings, and was only separated from the " kitchen " marked 
in Vertue's map by one suite of lodgings marked " Duke of Ormond " 
— and Ormonde was in Ireland from 1662 to 1669, so that his apart- 
ments might have been occupied by someone else; or (2) that the lady, 
if she made a move early in 1664, ^^^ ^'^^ before that actually in some 
" chamber in Whitehall next the King's own," as Pepys says, that 
is to say, east of the Privy Garden. The Duchess of Portsmouth 
was later lodged on the east side "at the end of the gallery." 

F. 113, 1. 28. In the possession of Mr. Ambrose Lee. It is 
quoted by Allan Fea, Some Beauties of the Seventeenth Century, 
p. 184. 

P. 114, 1. 18. Cominges to Lionne, September 15th, 1664. Jus- 
serand, Appendix, 229. 



332 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 117, 1. 4. From the Memoirs it appears that Gramont, when 
dictating them, entirely forgot the year of his marriage, which he only 
mentions in his last paragraph. This marriage had been assigned to 
the year 1663, as Gramont's son was born on September 7th, 1664. 
Within two months after the latter date he took wife and child to 
France. On January 28th, 1665, Cominges tells Lionne that the 
Chevalier has been in London again for two months and has become 
le plus effronte menteur du monde. The wife's return is not mentioned, 
though to be present at the Candlemas Day revel she must have come 
back, at the latest, about the time when Cominges was writing to 
Lionne. 

P. 118, 1. 4. Diary ^ September 9th, 1678, and elsewhere. 

P. 118, 1. 17. Pepys, Diar^y February 21st, 1665; Gramont 
Memoirs^ chap. x. 

P. 118, 1. 27. Pepys, Diar^y March 13th, 1665. Calendar of 
State Papers {Domestic) reports on March 3rd, 1665, that Lord 
Castlemaine has landed at Dover and gone to London. 

P. 1 19, 1. 5. So Lady Sandwich told Pepys {Diary ^ February 21st, 
1665). 

P. 120, footnote. Pepys, Diary, May 15th, 1663. 

P. 121, 1. 4. See his instructions of April 4th, 1665, to la ceUbre 
Ambassade, quoted in Jusserand, French Ambassador, Appendix, pp. 
233-4. The ninth chapter of M. Jusserand's book is of great interest 
on this period. 

P. 122, 1. 2. "We do naturally love the Spanish and hate the 
French," says Pepys, October loth, 1661. 

P. 122, 1. 7. Letter to Louis, April 23rd, 1665. 

P. 123, 1. 9. Henry Savile to Lady Dorothy Savile, June, 1665 
{Savile Correspondence). 

P. 124, 1. 3. Bigorre to Lionne, July 9th, 1665 (Jusserand, Ap- 
pendix, 243). 

P. 124, 1. 7. Courtin to Lionne, July 9th (Jusserand, App., 243). 

P. 125, 1. 17. H.M.C. Rep. 14, App., Pi. 2. Letter of October 
2nd, 1665. 

P. 125, 1. 25. Letter to Lionne, August 30th, 1665. 

P. 125, I. 31. Concerning this royal visit to Oxford see Mr. 
A. Clark's edition of Wood's Life and Times and the Hon. G. C. 
Brodrick's Memorials of Merton College. 



NOTES 333 

P. 127, 1. 2. Continuation, II, 450. 
P. 130, 1. 10. lb.. Ill, 61. 
P. 132, 1. 14, lb.. Ill, 60. 
P. 133,1. 15. 7^,111, 61-2. 

P. 133, 1. 20. " Mr. May," i.e. Baptist or Bab May, of whom we 
shall hear again. 

P. 134, 1. 14. Steinman (Second Addenda, p. 4) discovered that the 
_^2000 incurred for these rings was among the j{^3o,ooo worth of 
debts paid for Lady Castlemaine by the King at the end of this year. 
Concerning the huge transactions between Bakewell and the King see 
Mr. Wheatley's note on Pepys, Diary, July 1 ith, 1665. 

P. 134, 1. 16. Calendar of State Papers {Domestic), 1666, uncertain 
month, petition of John Leroy. In September Leroy petitions again 
for the money, saying that he has had great losses by the burning of his 
house in the Fire. 

P. 136, 1. 30. Letter quoted in Savile Correspondence, p. 301 n. 

P. 138, 1. 4. Calendar of State Papers {Domestic), May 23rd, 1666, 

P. 138, 1. 23. Evelyn, Diary, September 6th, 7th, 1666. 

P. 139, 1. 8. Pepys, Diary, September 26th, 1666. 

P. 139, 1. lo. Evelyn, Diary, October i8th, 1666. 

P. 140, 1. 24. Pierce's theory as to the lady's condition, however 
(Pepys, October i 5th, 1666), does not seem to have been correct. At 
any rate, there was no child born that is ever heard of. 

P. 141, 11. 24^ Pepys, Diary, March 20th, April 3rd, 1666. 

P. 142, 1. 14. Penn, on March 18th, 1667, told Pepys that he had 
that day brought in an account of Richmond's estate and debts to the 
King. Evelyn gave Pepys " the whole story of Mrs. Stewart's coming 
away from Court" on April 26th, 1667. Among other arguments 
which Evelyn used to prove that Frances Stewart was honest to the last 
was that founded on the King's keeping in with Lady Castlemaine, 
"for he was never known to keep two mistresses in his life." 

P. 143, 1. 8. Continuation, III, 228. 

P. 143, 1. 31. Coke, J Detection of the Court and State of England 
(17 19), pp. 155-6. Coke was himself in the Park on this day, 
June loth. 

P. 144, 1. 22. Diary, June 24th, 1667. 

P. 145, 1. 6. History, I, 169. 



334 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 145, 1. 20. Diary, July 7th, 1667. 

P. 146, 1. 3. Calendar, August 29th, 1667. 

P. 146, 1. 31. Pepys, Diary, July 12th, 1667. He gets his in- 
formation from Sir H. Cholmly. Sir Thomas Crew confirms it the 
same day. 

P. 147, 1. 28. Diary, July 29th. Next day Mr. Cooling, my Lord 
Chamberlain's secretary, being in drink, furnishes Pepys with still more 
details, couched in most plain and vigorous language — part of the vigour 
being due to Lady Castlemaine, who was no stickler in her talk. 
Pierce's story is told by Pepys on August 7th. 

P. 148, 1. 10. See, for example, Memoirs, chap. vi. Jermyn is 
also the Germanicus of Mrs. Manley's Nevf Atalantis, 

P. 1 48, 1. 16. Diary, July 29th, 1667. 

P. 149, 1. I. lb. Pierce, on August 7th, also says that she "hath 
nearly hectored him [the King] out of his wits." 

P. 149, 1. 3. Pepys, Diary, July 30th, 1667. 
P. 149, 1. 5. In Epicene, or the Silent Woman. 
P. 150, I. I. Continuation, III, 291 ff. 

P. 151, 1. 20. lb.. Ill, 294. Pepys hears the same story, 
November iith, 1667. 

P. 151, 1. 28. lb.. Ill, 323. 

P. 152, 1. 2. Diary, August 27th, 1667. 

P. 152, 1. 7. Pepys, Diary, September 8th, nth. Part of this 
tale was told by a Mr. Rawlinson, who had it from "one of my Lord 
Chancellor's gentlemen." 

P. 152, 1. 21. Carte, History of the Duke of Ormonde, IV, 152. 
Carte says : " The Countess of Castlemaine, whose understanding bore 
no proportion to her power, and who would have been able to do great 
mischiefs if her egregious folly had not often defeated her measures, 
was so outrageous in her opposition to the Chancellor that she openly 
expressed her malice against him in all places, and did not scruple to 
declare in the Queen's Chamber in the presence of much company that 
she hoped to see his head upon a stake, to keep company with those of 
the regicides on Westminster Hall. The occasion of this fury was that 
he would never let anything pass the Great Seal in which she was 
named, and often by his wise remonstrances prevailed with the King to 
alter the resolutions which she had persuaded him to take." 

P. 153, 1. 15. Sir Peter Pett to Antony Wood (? in 1693), 
Aubrey's Letters of Eminent Men. 



NOTES 335 

P. 154, 1. 14. Pepys, Diary, September ist, 5th, 8th, loth, 1667. 

P. 157, 1. II. In a letter to his sister, Duchess of Orleans, on 
May 7th, 1668. On August 26th of the previous year he had written 
to the same : " You may think me ill-natured, but if you consider how 
hard a thing 'tis to swallow an injury done by a person I had so much 
tendernesse for you will in some degree excuse the resentment I use 
towards her." 

P. 159, 1, 12, Pepys, Diary, March 7th, 1667. See Lord Bray- 
brooke's instructive note there. 

P. 160, I, 26. Diary, April 7th, 1668. 

P. 161, 11. 5, 8. Evelyn, April 2nd ; Pepys, April 6th, 1668. 

P. 164, 1. 16. Pepys, T)iary, February 14th, 1668. 

P, 166, 1. 20. IL, January 15th, 1669. 

P. 1 68, footnote. H. M.C., Bucckugh and Queensberry MSB., Vol. I. 

P. 175, footnote. Lettres sur la Cour de Lords XIV {i66/-yo), 
with introduction and notes by Jean Lemoine. 

P. 176, 1. 10. Charles declared his intention with regard to the 
new honours for Lady Castlemaine and two of her sons more than a 
month before this. See an amusing letter from Henshaw to Sir Robert 
Paston, July i6th, 1670 {H.M.C., Rep. 6, App., Ingtlby MSS.). 

P. 176, 1. 18. Memoirs, chap. x. 

P. 178, 1. 26. Evelyn, Diary, December 4th, 1696. 

P. 179, 1. 3. Letters of Chesterfield, 159. 

P. 179, 1. 27. History, I, 474. 

P. 180, footnote. Lansdowne's Works, II, 173. 

P. 181, 1. 3. Reresby, Memoirs, p. 81. 

P. 182, 1. 5. H.M.C., Rep. 12, App., Pt. V. Lady Mary Bertie 
to Katherine Noel, February 23rd, 167 1. 

P. 184, 1. 3. H.M.C., Rep. 5, App., Hatherton MSS. 

P. 185, 1. II. Carte, II, 152-3. It appears from Carte as if the 
King's attempted grant of Phoenix Park to the lady was about 1663. 

P. 187, 1. I. Memoirs, chap. xi. Gramont goes on to say that 
" this intrigue had become a general topic in all companies when the 
Court arrived in London " from the West, and that "some said she had 
already presented him with Jermyn's pension and Jacob Hall's salary.' 
Such chronology is very Gramontian, 



p. 


187, 1. 22. 


p. 


188,1. 10. 


p. 


188, 1. 15. 


p. 


189,1.4. 



336 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

New Atalanthy I, 22. 

Letter of November 1 8th, 1748. 

Burnet, History, I, 370. 

The fourth Lord Chesterfield, in the letter quoted 
above, says that the Duchess of Cleveland, struck by Churchill's 
graces, "gave him ^5000, with which he immediately bought an 
annuity for his life of ;^5oo a year of my grandfather Halifax, which 
was the foundation of his subsequent fortune." It appears that this 
annuity was bought in 1674 for ^^4500, nine years' purchase being 
Lord Halifax's usual price. (See Savile Correspondence.^ Boyer, in 
the obituary of the Duchess in his Annals of Queen Anne's Reign, speaks 
of her "generous rewarding of the caresses of a handsome young 
gentleman of the Court " with the sum of j^6ooo, " which lay the 
foundation of his after fortune." And Mrs. Manley in The New 
Atalantis says that the Duchess gave 6000 crowns for a place in the 
Prince of Tameran's (Duke of York's) Bedchamber for Count Fortu- 
natus (Churchill) and procured for him a rise in the Army, while 
taking his " fair and fortunate sister " to attend on herself. Fortunatus 
then persuaded her to have his sister transferred to the Princess of 
Tamerati's (Duchess of York's) household. Later he was given by the 
Duchess of Cleveland 140,000 crowns in cash alone, besides having 
honours and places of profit procured for him. It is with little sur- 
prise that we read Lord Somers's opinion of Marlborough, in answer to 
Queen Anne's request for it, that he was " the worst man God ever 
made" (Macpherson's History, Vol. VIII, Carte's Mem. 'Book). Cp. 
what Macaulay says of the Duke's venality, Hist., chap. xiv. 
P. 190,1. 20. Pope, Sermon against Adultery. 

P. 191, 1. 7. On the date of production of Love in a Wood see 
Mr. G. A. Aitken's article in the Dictionary of National Biography. 
He shows fairly conclusively that it was first acted in the early spring 
before its registration at Stationers' Hall (with the dedication) on 
October 6th, 1671. 

P. 191, 1, 12. Dennis, Familiar Letters (edition of 1721), pp. 
216-7. Macaulay, in his essay on Wycherley, gives only the tamer 
(and very pointless) version which the Rev. Joseph Spence took down 
from the conversation of Alexander Pope. Pope told the tale thus : 
" Wycherley was a very handsome man. His acquaintance with the 
famous Duchess of Cleveland commenced oddly enough. One day, 
as he passed that duchess's coach in the ring, she leaned out of the 
window, and cried out loudly enough to be heard distinctly by him : 



NOTES 337 

* Sir, you're a rascal ; you're a villain ! ' Wycherley from that instant 
entertained hopes. He did not fail waiting on her the next morning : 
and with a very melancholy tone begged to know how it was possible 
for him to have so much disobliged her Grace ? They were very 
good friends from that time ; yet, after all, what did he get by her?" — 
Spence, Anecdotes^ p. i6. 

P, 191, 1. 21. Love in a Wood, Act I, Scene 2. The last two 
lines of the song run : 

" Great Wits and Great Braves 
Have always a Punk to their Mother." 

P. 194, 1. 2. In Hatton Correspondence,'^ o\. I. 

P. 194, 1. 9. Ih., letter of January iSth, 1672. 

P, 194, 1. 22. Evelyn, Diary, September loth, 1672. 

P. 195, 11. 3, 7. lb., October 9th, 21st, 1672. 

P. 196, 1. 13. Perhaps we should say that he had already done so 
before the marriage ; since the reversion of the grant of June 5th, 
1672, is to Charles Fitzroy and his heirs male, and in default to Henry 
Fitzroy and his heirs male. 

P. 197, 1. 19. Evelyn, Diary, October 17th, 1671. 

P. 200, 1. 21. Letters to Sir Joseph Williamson {Camden Society's 
Publications). 

P. 201, 1. 10. Hatton Correspondence. 

P. 201, 1. 27. Nell Gwynn used a coarser word. 

P. 202, 1. 5. Letters to Williamson, August 25th, 1673. 

P. 205, 1. 4. Evelyn, Diary, September loth, 1677. 

P. 205, 1. 10. Derham to Williamson, November 5th, 1673. 

P. 205, 1. 27. First published by Steinman, First Addenda (1874) 
from Ashmolean MSS. 837. 

P. 207, 1. 5. Camden Society^ s Publications (Old Series), No. 52. 

P. 208, 1. 27. Letters of Humphrey Prideaux, Camden Society's 
Publications (New Series), No. 15. 

P. 210,11. II, 13. lb.. Letters of November 8th, 1675, and Octo- 
ber 31st, 1676. 

P. 212, 1. 13. Evelyn, Diary, September 6th, 1676. 

P. 212, 1. 20. H.M.C., Rep. 12, App., Pt. V, 

P. 213, 1. 16. H.M.C., Rep. 4, App., Bath MSS. 
z 



338 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 214, 1. 10. Grant of April 7th, 1677. 

P. 217, 1. 7. First printed by Steinman, Memoir, pp. 154-5, from 
the originals in the possession of Earl Stanhope. They are undated, 
but obviously belong to this period. 

P. 219, 1. 21. Hatton Correspondence, I, 168. 

P. 220, 1. 10. The Convent of the Holy Sepulchre, rue Neuve de 
Bellechase, Saint-Germain, within the walls of Paris. 

P. 220, 1. 12. Hatton Correspondence^ I, 167. 

P. 220, 1. 14. In The Adventures ofRivella there is a somewhat dif- 
ferent version of the Montagu affair : '* During the short stay Rivella 
had made in Hilarias family, she was become acquainted with the Lord 
Crafty. He had been Ambassador in France, where his negotiations 
are said to have procured as much advantage to your King " — the 
supposed narrator of The Adventures, it must be remembered, is con- 
versing with a young French Chevalier — " as they did dishonour to his 
own country. He had a long head turn'd to deceit and over-reaching. 
If such a thing were to be done two ways, he never lov'd the plain, 
nor valu'd a point if he could easily carry it. His person was not at 
all beholding to nature, and yet he had possessed more fine women 
than had the finest gentleman, not less than twice or thrice becoming 
his master's rival. When Hi/aria was in France he found it extreamly 
convenient for his affairs to be well with her, as she was mistress, and 
himself Ambassador. For some time 'tis supposed that he lov'd her 
out of inclination, her own charms being inevitable ; but finding she was 
not very regular, he reproach'd her in such a manner that the haughty 
Hi/aria vow'd his ruin. She would not permit a subject to take that 
freedom she would not allow a monarch, which was, prescribing rules 
for her conduct. In short, her power was such over the King, tho' 
he was even then in the arms of a new and younger mistress, and 
Hi/aria at so great a distance from him, as to yield to the plague of her 
importunity with which she fill'd her letters. He consented that Lord 
Crafty should be recall'd, upon secret advice that she pretended to have 
received of his corruption and treachery. The Ambassador did not 
want either for friends in England, nor in Hilaria^s own family, who 
gave him very early advice of what was design'd against him. He had 
the dexterity to ward the intended blow, and turn it upon her that was 
the aggressor ; Hi/aria's own daughter betray 'd her to the Ambassador. 
He had corrupted not only her heart, but seduced her from her duty 
and integrity. Her mother was gone to take the Bourbon waters, 
leaving this young lady the care of her family, and more immediately 



NOTES 339 

of such letters as a certain person should write to her, full of amorous 
raptures for the favours she had bestow'd. These fatal letters, at least 
several of them with answers full of tenderness under Hilaria's own 
hand, the Ambassador proved so lucky as to make himself master of. 
He return'd with his credentials to England to accuse Hilaria and 
acquit himself. The mistress was summon'd from France to justify 
her ill conduct. What could be said against such clear evidences of 
her disloyalty ? 'Tis true, she had to deal with the most merciful 
Prince in the world, and who made the largest allowances for human 
frailty, which she so far improv'd as to tell His Majesty there was 
nothing criminal in a correspondence design'd only for amusement, 
without presuming to aim at consequences ; the very mode and manner 
of expression in French and English were widely different ; that 
which in one language carried an air of extream gallantry meant no 
more than meer civility in t' other. Whether the Monarch were, or 
would seem persuaded, he appear'd so, and order'd her to forgive the 
Ambassador ; to whom he return'd his thanks for the care he had 
taken of his glory, very much to Hilaria s mortification, who was not 
suffer'd to exhibit her complaint against him, which was look'd upon as 
proceeding only from the malice and revenge of a vindictive guilty 
woman." [The Lord Crafty in the above is, of course, Ralph 
Montagu.] 

For Montagu's attempted defence of himself when he got back to 
London see a long letter dated July 6th, 1678, from Sir Robert South- 
well to the Duke of Ormonde, which is among the MSS. of the 
Marquess of Ormonde {H.M.C., Ormonde MSS., Vol. IV.). Among 
other things Montagu says that, King Charles having entrusted to him 
the compassing of a marriage between Northumberland and Lady 
Elizabeth Percy, the Duchess of Cleveland and his wife became 
friends of a sort. " But his Lady being (on a visit to the Duchess) 
forbid admission because Monsieur Chattillean [j/V] was with her, she 
returned in high resentment, so that he, seeing the designed marriage in 
danger, took on him to expostulate very roundly with the Duchess for 
her licentious course of life with the said Monsieur "—with the result 
that might be expected. To protect himself, therefore, he had six of 
her letters stolen, whereof some abounded with gross and unseemly 
things, some with disrespect to His Majesty, etc. In fact, the mischief 
was all due to the Duchess and Chatillon. Montagu had no chance of 
telling Charles this, however, for as soon as he began the King cut him 
short, saying that he knew already too much of it, and forbade him the 
Court. 



340 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 22 1, 1. I. Harleian MSS., 7006, pp. 171-6. This is taken 
from a copy made by the Rev. George Harbin in 173 1 from the 
original letter, then in the possession of the Earl of Berkshire. The 
punctuation follows Harbin, with a few modifications. It is clearly 
not the Duchess's own. See next note. 

P. 228,1. 13. British Museum Additional MSS., 21, 505. This 
being the original letter, the Duchess's spelling has been carefully pre- 
served. With regard to the punctuation, the full stops, the colons, 
and the commas have been added for the sake of clearness ; as 
also a few quotation-marks for the speeches reported. The writer used 
no stops at all except ten semicolons ! [In the cases of both this and 
the other letter from Paris I have consulted the actual MSS. in the 
British Museum, so that the transcripts may claim to be more accurate 
than those which have appeared hitherto in print, previous editors 
having taken some liberties with the text. — P.W.S.] 

P. 232, 1. 20. The Abbey of Our Lady, Port Royal des Champs, 
near Versailles. 

P. 236, 1. 16. H.M.C., Rep. 12, J pp., Pt. V. 

P. 237, 1. 3. H.M.C., Rep. 7, Jpp. W. Denton to Sir Ralph 
Verney, September 14th, 1671 : "I hear Thin is laid siege to Lady 
Cleveland's daughter." 

P. 237, 1. 21. A Brief Historical Relation of State Af airs from Sep- 
tember, 1678, to April, 1714. This diary of Narcissus Luttrell is by 
no means as ponderous as its title would indicate. This will be clear 
from our quotations. 

P. 237, footnote. H.M.C., Buccleugh and Oueensberry MSS. 

P. 240, 1. 13. Letter of August i6th, 1679. 

P. 241, 1. 13. Hatton Correspondence, Letter of November 22nd, 
1677. Compare what Dorothy, wife of Sir William Temple, writes 
to her father in 1684 : "If papa were near, I should think myself a 
perfect pope, though I hope I should not be burned as there was one 
at Nell Gwynn's door the 5th of November, who was set in a great 
chair, with a red nose half a yard long, with some hundreds of boys 
throwing squibs at it." 

P. 242, 1. 10. The Tozoer Bills show that Lord Castlemaine was 
in the Tower in the Christmas quarter of 1678, the Christmas quarter 
of 1679, and the Lady Day and Midsummer quarters of 1680. 

P. 242, 1. 13. Hatton Correspondence, I, 200. 



NOTES 341 

P. 243, 1. 23. Evelyn, Diary, December 4th, 1679. ^^ '^ now that 
he declares Cleveland House " a noble palace, too good for that in- 
famous . . .," as already quoted on p. 178. 

P. 244, 1, 15. H.M.C., Rep. I2.y App., Pt. V. But see also a 
letter from the Countess of Northampton on June loth. 

P. 245, 1. 2. H.M.C.y 1{ep. 12, App., Pt. V. Letter dated i68i, 
November 15, from Chaloner Chute to the Countess of Rutland. 

P. 245, 1. 27. Steinman, First Addenda, pp. 1 1, 12. The letter 
is dated March 17th, 1683, i.e. 168-^, or, as we now write, 1684. 

P. 246, 1. 27. Evelyn, Diary, October 24th, 1684. 

P. 247, 1. 3. Memoirs of John Macky, p. 39, quoted by Jesse, 
Memoirs of ike Court of England during the Reign of the Stuarts, IV, 
p. 62. With regard to his betrayal of James II, the King on the 
night of December i ith confided to the Duke his determination to fly, 
desiring him to keep it a profound secret. He left Whitehall Stairs by 
boat about 3 a.m., and when the door of the royal bedchamber was 
thrown open at the usual hour of the levee, the Duke came out and 
told the crowd waiting in the antechamber that James had fled. 
" Having performed this last act of kindness for his sovereign," says 
Jesse (IV, 414), "the Duke . . . immediately placed himself at the 
head of his regiment of guards and declared for the Prince of 
Orange." 

P. 248, 1. 29. See the article on Goodman in Dictionary of 'National 
Biography. 

P. 249, 1. 6. Luttrell in August 1685 describes how "the 
picture of the late Duke of Monmouth, which was drawn by Sir 
Peter Lely, and given to the University of Cambridge when he was 
their chancellor [elected in 1674], is lately, together with the frame, 
burnt by order before the schools of the University." 

P. 250, 1. 16. History of England during the Reign of the Royal House 
of Stuart, II, 576. 

P. 251, 1. 5. Anne, Countess of Sunderland, to Henry Sidney, 
January 8th, 1680. 

P. 25 1, 1. 9. The following is a rough list of the chief ascertainable 
gifts from Charles II to Barbara : — 

February, 1663. All the King's Christmas presents from the 

peers (p. 92). 
(?) 1663. Phoenix Park, Dublin, afterwards withdrawn (see 
below). 



342 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

December, 1666. j^30,ooo to pay her debts (p. 141). 

August 29th, 1667. 5600 oz. of silver-plate (p. 146). 

April, 1668. Berkshire House (p. 64). 

1669. _^4700 a year out of the Post Office revenues (p. 171). 

January, 1671. Nonsuch House and park (p. 182). 

(Before August 9th) 1671. "_^ 1 0,000 a year more" from the 

Customs; "likewise near j^ 10,000 a year out of the new 

farm of the county excise of beer and ale " ; and various 

reversions (p. 184). 
February, 1672. Manors, etc., in Surrey. Large grants to her 

children in this and the following years (pp. 186, 196, 202). 
July, 1673. A (J new) pension of ^^ 5 5 00 from the wine licence 

revenue, and other minor gifts (pp. 202-3). 
1674. Large grants to her daughters on their marriages (p. 206). 
October 9th, 1674. £6000 a year from the Excise (p. 208). 
1676. Compensation for the withdrawn grant of Phoenix Park 

(p. 185). 
April 7th, 1677. Chief Stewardship, etc., of Hampton Court 

(p. 214). 
1679. Gift of j^25,ooo which Essex refused to pay, but his 

successor paid (p. 252). 
1684-5. Payment of ^1599 out of the secret services fund of 

Charles II (p. 250, 251). 

P. 251, 11. 13, 30. See article on Essex by Mr. Osmund Airy in 
Dictionarf of National biography. The letter is in H.M.C., Rep. 7, 
App.^ 477 b. (John Verney to Sir Ralph Verney, Nov, 27th, 1679.) 

P. 253, 1. 6. Dr. Raymond Crawfurd, in his painfully interesting 
monograph, The Last Days of Charles II, says : " One may assert, with 
considerable confidence, that his death was due to chronic granular kidney 
(a form of Bright's disease), with uraemic convulsions, a disease that 
claims the highest proportion of its victims during the fifth and sixth 
decades of life." 

P. 254, 1. 8. Hatton Correspondence. 

P. 256, 1. 6. Lord Chesterfield, writing to the Earl o'i Arran on 
February 7th, 1685, says in his decidedly touching account of King 
Charles's deathbed (he was present for two whole nights and saw him 
expire) : " Lastly, he asked his subjects' pardon for anything that had 
been neglected, or acted conterary to the best rules of a good govern- 
ment." — Letters, p. 279. 

P. 256, i. 14. Burnet, History, II, 461. 



NOTES 343 

P. 258, 1.6. U.,l,i6g. 

P. 261, 1. 10. Luttrell, February 2nd, 1685, 

P. 264, I. 9. Luttrell, June, 1685. 

P. 264, I. 14. News-letter of July 7th, 1685, among the Rutland 
MSS. {H.M.C., Rep. 12, App., Pt. F.) 

P. 265, 1. 4. El/is Correspondence^ Letter of March 15th, 1686. 

P. 265, 1. 9. H.M.C., Rep. I2y App.y Pt. V. Letter of March 1 3th, 
1686. 

P. 265, 1. 12. Poems on Affairs of State, II, 54. 

P. 266, 1. 2. " A song to the old tune of Taking of Snuff is the 
Mode of the Court," in Poems on Affairs of State. Jesse, Memoirs, 
IV, 63, quotes both this and another entertaining poem, "The Lovers* 
Session," which contains the line about Northumberland's " beautiful 
face and dull stupid carriage " and goes on : 

" But his prince-like project to kidnap his wife, 
And a lady so free to make pris'ner for life, 
Was tyranny to which the sex ne'er would submit, 
And an ill-natured fool they liked worse than a wit." 

P. 266, 1. 16. H.M.C., Rep. 12, App.y Pt. V. Letter of March 
13th, 1686. 

P. 267, 1. 15. Luttrell, February, 1687. 

P. 267, 1. 27. Wellwood, p. 185. 

P. 268, 1. 10. Memoirs, II, 78. 

P. 270, 1. 5. Original Treasury Papers, IV, 3, quoted by Steinman, 
First Addenda, p. 15. 

P. 271, 1. 28. Evelyn, August i8th, 1688. 

P. 272, 1. 2. Reresby gives a different reason, that he "had, at a 
meeting of the Scotch nobility in London, proposed to recall King 
James." 

P. 272, 1. 17. In Esmond Viscount Castlewood takes the place of 
the Duke of Hamilton. 

P. 273, 1. I. Cunningham, Handbook of London. 

P. 276, 1. 31. The " kitchin-maid," according to the Complcat 
Key, is "pretended Madam Beauclair." 

P. 280, 1. 13. "The first Dutchess in England," i.e. the Duchess 
of Norfolk. 



344 MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 

P. 284, 1. 5. See quotation from the Earl of Dorset's poem at the 
head of chapter i. 

P. 284, 1. 17. Kneller's picture in the National Portrait Gallery, 

P. 288,1. 17. See C. E. Lart, Jacobite Extracts from the Parish 
Registers of St. Germain-en- Lay e (1910), Vol. I. 

P. 290, 11. 3, 24^ Steinman, First Addenda, pp. 16-18, from 
Treasury Papers. 

P. 291, footnote. H.M.C., Rep. 14, App., Pt. II. 

P. 293, 1. 13. James Caulfield, Portraits, Memoirs, and Character of 
Eminent Persons, on Beau Feilding. This is not an authoritative work, 
but its compiler had access to information now lost. 

P. 294, 1. I, Tatler, No. 50 (August 4th, 1709). 

P. 297, 1. 18. First edition, 1715 ; second and enlarged edition, 
1723- 

P. 297, 1. 24. He appears as " Colonel Robert Fielding " in 
A Jacobite Narrative of the War in Ireland, his regiment being one of 
those sent to France in the April of 1690, in exchange for some 
French regiments which James had asked Louis to send him (pp. 89, 
92). The Narrative does not say whether the Colonel accompanied 
his regiment or not. 

P. 298, 1. 14. Tatler, No. 50. 

P. 299, 1. 31. Went-vforth Papers, p. 50. 

P. 300, 1. 7. Atterburfs Correspondence, II, 31. As a matter of 
fact, Dryden calls Zvnri " Blest madman ! " 

P. 301, 1. 23. Wentworth Papers, pp. 58-9. 

P. 302, 1. 12. Pasted in Harleian MSS., 5808, p. 135. Quoted by 
Steinman, Second Addenda, p. 14. 

P. 304, 1. 7. See Howell, State Trials, XIV, cols. 1327-72, for 
a report of the whole proceedings ; and Cases of Divorce for a part 
account. 

P. 304, 1. 28. As Montague put it in his opening speech, "though 
the law doth not take away from him that shall be convicted thereof 
[bigamy, a crime amounting to felony] the benefit of his clergy, yet it 
is such a crime as doth take away from the prisoner the assistance of 
counsel." 

P. 309, footnote. The "Articles" are given in full in Cases of 
Divorce, as are the seven letters from Feilding to Mary Wadsworth. 



NOTES 345 

P. 316, 1. 9. Tatkr, No. 51 (August 6th, 1709) : " Orlando now 
raves in a garret, and calls to his neighbour skies to pity his dolors and 
find redress for an unhappy lover." 

P. 3 1 7> ^- 21. See articles on Charles Hamilton and James Douglas, 
fourth Duke of Hamilton, in Dictionary of National Biography. Mr. 
Martin Haile in his James Francis Edvtard, the Old Chevalier^ 
pp. 128-9, sets out well the reasons for thinking that the killing of 
the Duke of Hamilton was a treacherous murder by those whom 
Swift calls " the two most abandoned wretches that ever infested this 
island " — Mohun and MacCartney. Had the Duke gone to France 
as Queen Anne's ambassador (which he was on the point of doing) 
the Jacobite cause might have been saved. And young Hamilton, in 
his evidence at the trial, charged MacCartney with thrusting at his 
father as he lay on the ground wounded. In 17 19 MacCartney was 
rewarded with the governorship of Portsmouth. 

P. 319, 1. 3. Thomas ¥2i\AV.ner, History and Antiquities of Brentford, 
Ealing, and Chiszoick, p. 384. Mr. Lloyd Sanders, in his Old Kezv, 
Chiszvick and Kensington, says that Walpole House was a school for 
young gentlemen as early as 1 8 1 7 and that Thackeray was one of the 
pupils there. 

P. 3 1 9, 1. 2 1 . Fea (Some Beauties, etc., p. 1 90) states that "the spirit 
of the once lovely Barbara is said to haunt a room in the upper part of 
the building [Walpole House] wringing her hands and bemoaning the 
loss of her beauty " — which, he points out, is an unreasonable thing for 
the spirit to do, seeing that Kneller's portrait of her in the National 
Portrait Gallery shows that she retained her good looks. 

P. 321, 1. 13. On the Lifford peerage see G, E. C[okayne], 
Complete Peerage, Vol. V, p. 77. Frederic William appears to have 
been created Earl in July, 1698, but no patent seems to have been 
enrolled. 

ADDENDUM 

P. 122, 1. 12. On Lauderdale's acquaintance with Lady Castle- 
maine Mr. John Willcock, in J Scots Earl in Covenanting Times 
(p. 1 1 7), writes : " We are told on good authority that friendshij) is 
impossible among the wicked, so it is certain that the alliance in ques- 
tion was a purely mercenary contract. As the royal mistress was 
ravenously greedy, one is not surprised to find that before Lauderdale 
had been long associated with her he was in straits for ready money. 
From some quarter he must have obtained a fresh supply, for the 
Countess was unfailing in her support of him against all his enemies." 



INDEX 



Addison, Joseph, 294 
Anglesea, Earl of (Charles 
Villiers), 7, 13, 16, 17, 23, 

36, 325 

Anglesea, Lady, see Mary 
Bayning 

Anne, Princess, afterwards 
Queen, 35, 216, 291, 300, 
320, 336, 345 

Arlington, Earl of (Henry 
Bennet), 80, 84, 104, 107, 
120, 151, 168;/., 169, 194-5, 
204-5, 206, 236, 238-9 

Arlington, Lady, 238 

Arran, Earl of (James Douglas, 
afterwards Duke of Hamil- 
ton), 271-2, 317, 320, 342, 

343> 345 
Arran, Count of, see Charles 

Hamilton, senior 
Arundel of Wardour, Lord, 242 
Atterbury, Dr. Francis, 300 
Aubrey, John, 7, 129 n. 

Bakewell, Edward, 134, ■^Ty^i 
Barillon (French Ambassador), 

256 
Bath, Countess of, 75 
Batten, Sir William, 152 
Bayning, Elizabeth, 205 n. 
Bayning, Mary, 5, 7, 13, 16, 23, 

197-8, 205;/. 
Bayning, Paul, ist Viscount, 5, 

205 n. 
Beauclerc, Charles (afterwards 

Duke of St. Albans), 202, 

246 
Bennet, Sir Henry, see Earl of 

Arlington 



Bennet, Isabella (afterwards 
Duchess of Grafton), 195-6, 

237-9. 247 

Berkeley, Sir Charles (after- 
wards Viscount Fitzharding 
and Earl of Falmouth), 80, 
84, 88, 89, 102, no, 120, 
122, 258, 328 

Berkeley of Stratton, John, ist 
Baron, 185, 213, 219, 321 

Berkeley of Stratton, William, 
4th Baron, 321 

Bernard, Edward, 209-10 

Bertie, Peregrine, 263, 266, 287 

Blague, Miss, 11 7-1 8 

Blanquefort, Lord, 90 

Boucher, 3 10- 11 

Bouillon, Duchesse de (Maria 
Anna Mancini), 263 

Boyer, Abel, 2, 8, 22, 25, 31, 
71, 189, 190,248, 267 «., 284, 
289, 300, 320, 323, 326, 327, 

336 

Braybrooke, Lord, 328, 330 

Bristol, Earl of, 41, 43 

Broderick, Sir Alan, 61 

Brodrick, Hon. G. C, 332 

Broghill, Lord, 139 

Brounker, Lord, 152, 184 

Browne, Dr., 10 

Buckingham, ist Duke of 
(George Villiers), 4, 7, 46 

Buckingham, 2nd Duke of 
(George Villiers), 12, 46, 97, 
107, 146-7, 153) i58-9> 167, 
169, 175, 181, 188, 300, 

344 
Buckingham, Duchess of, see 

Mary Fairfax 



347 



348 



MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 



Burnet, Bishop, i, 40, 42-3, 
86, 134, 142, 145, 157, 158, 
179, i8on., 188, 227, 247, 

256, 323 

Butler, Lady Elizabeth (after- 
wards Countess of Chester- 
field), 37, 38, 75, 86-7, 179 

Butler, Lady Henrietta (after- 
wards Countess of Grantham), 
321 

Cambridge, Duke of, 143 
Capel, Lord, see Earl of Essex 
Capel, Lady, 19, 20, 325 
" Carlos, Don " (son of Charles 

II and Catherine Peg), 206 
Carnegy, Lady, see Lady Anne 

Hamilton 
Carte, Thomas, 82, 185, 328, 

334, 335 
Castlemaine, Earl of, see Roger 

Palmer 
Castlemaine, Countess of, see 

Barbara Villiers 
Catherine(ofBraganza), Queen, 

40-1, 45, 47 ^f^, 77-9, 95, 
99, loo-i, 104-8, 123, 126, 
128, 132,158, 167, 175,179- 
80, 240, 327, 330 
Catherine, Empress of Russia, 

319 

Caulfield, James, 293, 344 

Charles I, King, 7, 9, 35, 68, 
145, 183 

Charles II, King, 2, 29/!, 35, 
40, 4i#, 79, 82, 84/:, 92-4, 
96-8, 103, 105/:, no, 122, 

130. i32.zf-, i4i#, 154, 157- 
60, 164, 173 f., 188, i93f., 
200, 202-4, 207, 212, 214, 

227-8, 239 jf:, 257-60, 293, 
323, 326, 333, 335, 338-9, 

342, eU. 
Charnock, Robert, 285 
Chatillon, Marquis de, 218-19, 
^ 221, 225-6, 339 
Chaworth, Lady, 212-13, 236 



Chesterfield, ist Earl of, 9, 11 
Chesterfield, 2nd Earl of (PhiUp 
Stanhope), Sff'., 26-g, 37-8, 
47-8,86-8, 179, 217 «., 243, 

251, 325, 326, 342 
Chesterfield, 4th Earl of, 188, 

189, 190, 336 
Chesterfield, Ladies, see Lady 

Elizabeth Butler, Lady Anne 

Percy 
Chiffinch, William, 142, 145, 

255 . 
Churchill, Arabella, 189, 336 

Churchill, John, afterwards 
Duke of Marlborough, 187- 
90, 195, 208, 271, 276, 336 

Cholmly, Sir H,, 138, 141, 144, 

.169, 334 

Cibber, Colley, 249 

Clarendon, Earl of (Edward 
Hyde), 6, 32-3, 42-4, 48/:, 
69^, 80-1, 91, 102, 120, 
126-7, 130, 132-3, 142, 143, 
146, i49#, 158. 165, 252, 

258, 334, ^^'^^ 
Clark, Mr. A., 329, 332 

Cleveland, Earl of (ThomaS 

Wentworth), 178 
Cleveland, Duchess of, see 

Barbara Villiers 
Cokayne, G. E., 345 
Coke, Roger, 333 
Colbert (French Ambassador), 

168, 174-6, 194-5 
Cominges, Comte de, 85, 96, 

100, 105, 108, 109, 114-15, 

117, 119, 121, 126, 129, 

217 «., 328, 329, 332 
Congreve, William, 191, 265 
Cory, Mrs., 166-7 
Cosmo de' Medici, afterwards 

Grand Duke of Tuscany 

(Cosmo III), 324 
Courtin (French envoy), 124, 

125, 126, 129 
Crawfurd, Dr. Raymond, 342 
Creed, Mr., 73, 80, 95 



INDEX 



349 



Crofts, William, afterwards 

Lord, 78 
Crofts, James, see Duke of 

Monmouth 
Cromwell, Oliver, 11, 12, 20, 

137 n., 324, 326 
Cromwell, Frances, 11, 12 
Cromwell, Mary, 11 

Dacre, Lord, see Earl of Sussex 
Dale, Rev. L. W. T., 318 
Danby, Earl of, 206, 223, 251 
Dangerfield, Thomas, 242-3, 

262 
Dartmouth, Earl of, 49, 216, 

326, 327 
Davis, Mary (Moll), 28 ;;,, 159- 

60, 164, 166 
De la Cloche, James, 78 
Deleau, Anne, 298, 305^ 
Denbigh, Earl of, 292, 295, 

302 
Denham, Lady, 123, 139 
Dennis, John, 191, 265 
De Repas, Denis, 125,127,140 
Devonshire, Duke of, 302 
d'Orleans, see Orleans 
Dorset, Earl of, i 
Douglas, James, see Earl of 

Arran 
Drian, Don Francisco, 299, 

308, 311 
Dryden, John, 19, 92, 191, 

239-40, 262, 344 
Dyke, Sir Thomas, 233 

Ellis, John, 208, 210, 215, 263, 

265 
Essex, Earl of (Arthur Capel), 

25i> 321. 325 
Essex, Earl of (Algernon 

Capel), 321 

Evelyn, John, 31, 50, 78, 91, 

118, 138-9, 142, 164, 175, 

178, 182, 194-6, 199, 238-9, 

246, 247, 253-7, 262//., 271, 

328, III, etc. 



Fairfax, Lord, 12 

Fairfax, Mary (afterwards 

Duchess of Buckingham), 

12, 13, 75^ 83, 107 
Falmouth, Lord, see Sir Charles 

Berkeley 
Falmouth, Lady, 123, 148 
Faulkner, Thomas, 319, 345 
Fea,Mr.Allan,3i9,329, 331,345 
Feilding, George, 292, 293 
Feilding, Robert, 292-316, 344, 

345 
Fell, Dr. John, 209 

Fenwick, Sir John, 2S5, 286 

Ferrers, Captain, 89, 97 

Finch, Heneage (afterwards ist 
Earl of Nottingham), 206 

Fitzharding, Viscount, see Sir 
Charles Berkeley 

Fitzroy, Anne, see Anne Palmer 

" Fitzroy," Barbara, 187, 195, 
208, 215, 271-2 

Fitzroy, Charles (afterwards ist 

Duke of Southampton), 52-3, 

126, 170, 176, 178, 196, 202, 

208-10, 236, 248, 269, 277, 

.279. 318, 322 

Fitzroy, Charles, 2nd Duke of 
Grafton, 271, 300-2, 303 «., 
310, 314, 320, 321 

Fitzroy, Charlotte (afterwards 
Countess of Lichfield), 113, 
170, 205-7, 215, 237, 317 

Fitzroy, George (afterwards ist 

Duice of Northumberland), 

130-1, 170, 176, 208, 209, 

214, 236-7, 244-7, 249. 264 

/., 279, 302, 303 n., 314, 339, 

341, 343 

Fitzroy, Henry (afterwards ist 
Duke of Grafton), loi, iii, 
126, 170, 176, 195-6, 202, 
204-5, 208, 236-9, 243, 247, 
249, 264/., 271, 337 

Fitzroy, William, 2nd Duke of 
Southampton, 277, 322 

Foxcroft, Miss H. C., 323 



350 



MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 



Gerard, Lord and Lady, 85 
Glemham, Anne, 5 
Glemham, Dr., 148 
Goodman, Cardonell, 248-50, 

263,278-9,284-6,292, 298 «. 
"Goodman Cleveland," 263, 

287 
Gorges, Arthur, 198 
Grafton, ist and 2nd Dukes, 

see Henry and Charles Fitz- 

roy, Dukes of Grafton 
Grafton, Duchess of, see Isabella 

Bennet 
Gramont, Comte de, 24, 38, 87, 

9i>93) 105,108, 116-18, 141, 

171, 176-7, 187, 332, 335, 

etc, 
Gramont, Comtesse de, see 

Elizabeth Hamilton 
Grandison, Viscounts, see Oliver 

St. John, William Villiers, 

John Villiers 
Granger, James, 171 
Grantham, Earl of, 320-1 
Gwynn, Nell, 119, 137, 159, 

160, 182, 201-3, 237, 240, 

255-6, 262 «., 337, 340 

Haile, Mr. Martin, 345 

Hales, Sir Edward, 288 

Halifax, Lord, 336 

Hall, Jacob, 176, 177, 335 

Hamilton, Duke of (James 
Douglas), see Earl of Arran 

Hamilton, Duke of (James 
Hamilton), 13 

Hamilton, Duchess of, widow 
of preceding, 16, 17 

Hamilton, Lady Anne (after- 
wards Lady Carnegy and 
Countess of Southesk), 13, 
16, 17, 18, 119, 324 

Hamilton, Anthony, 38, 88, 
105, 108 71., no, 117 

Hamilton, Charles, senior, 
271-2, 317-18, 345 

Hamilton, Charles, junior, 318 



Hamilton, Elizabeth (after- 
wards Comtesse de Gramont), 

108 «., 117, 118, 296, 332 
Hamilton, James, 38, 88, 108 

;/., no, 117 
Harbin, Rev. George, 340 
Harlay, Francois de. Arch- 
bishop of Paris, 215, 229-30 
Harley, Sir Robert, 125, 140, 

291 
Hart, Charles, 160, 164, 171, 

186 
Harvey, Sir Daniel, 14 7-8, 166 

^'•, 235 
Harvey, Lady, 166-7, 212, 223 
Hatton, Charles, 201, 212, 220, 

241 
Hatton, Mary, 219 
Hatton, Viscount, 87, 194, 219, 

220, 255 
Henrietta, Princess, Duchesse 

d'Orleans, 80 ?/., 90, 173-5, 

iSi, 335 
Henrietta Maria, Queen, 10, 

31, 50, 68, 69, 72-3, 77-9, 

91, 121, 181, 183 
Henry VHI, King, 112, 183 
Herbert, William, see ist Baron 

Powis 
Herbert, Catherine (wife of Sir 

James Palmer), 23 
Howard, Lady Elizabeth, 19 
Howard, Lord, 197 
Howards, Earls of Berkshire, 

i9> 159, 165 
Hungerford, Sir Edv/ard, 190 
Hyde, Anne, see Duchess of 

York 
Hyde, Edward, see Earl of 

Clarendon 
Hyde, Lawrence (afterwards 

Earl of Rochester), 252 

Innocent XI, Pope, 267-8 

James I, King, 7, 55, 145 
James, Duke of York, after- 



INDEX 



351 



wards King James II, 24, 
35. 47, 79. 83, 86-7, 119, 
120, 122, 137, 138, 149, 150, 
166, 167, 168, 181, 200-1, 
222, 234, 247, 252, 255-6, 
261, 264/:, 288-9, 294, 328, 
341, 344, etc. 

James Francis Edward, Prince 
of Wales, 268, 285, 345 

Jameson, Mrs., 29, 325 

Jennings, Frances (afterwards 
Duchess of Tyrconnel), 118 

Jermyn, Henry (afterwards Earl 
of Dover), 88, 148, 176-7, 
188, 194, 334, 335 

Jersey, Earl of, 314 

Jesse, John H., 24, 29, 325, 

341, 343 
Jusserand, M. J. J., 328, 329, 

330, 332 

Katherine of Braganza, sec 

Queen Catherine 
Kendal, Duchess of, 143 
Keroualle, Louise de (after- 
wards Duchess of Ports- 
mouth), 2, 137, 155, 173-6, 

182, 194-5, 201-4, 2IO-II, 
217 «,, 220, 223, 224, 240, 
244, 245, 250-1, 253,255-6, 
,259, 261, 320, 331 

Killigrew, Henry, 136-7 
Killigrew, Thomas, 137 
Kirkhoven, see John Poliander 
Kneller, Sir Godfrey, 284, 344, 

345 
Knipp, Mrs., 160-1 

Konigsmark, Count John von, 
237 

Lake, Dr. Edward, 35 
Lambert, General, 1 1 2 
Lansdowne, Baron, 180;/. 
Lauderdale, Earl of (afterwards 

Duke), 122, 181, 345 
Legge, Colonel William, 49, 

327 



Lely, Sir Peter, 2, 148, 192, 

324- 341 

Lennox, Charles (afterwards 

Duke of Richmond and 

Lennox), 195, 208, 244, 246 

Leroy, John, 134, 138, 333 

Lichfield, Earl of, 205, 215, 

.237, 314 
Lichfield, Lady, see Charlotte 

Fitzroy 
Li fiord. Earl of, 320-1, 345 
Lionne, Hugues de, 85, 108, 

109, 114, 119 
Lloyd Sanders, Mr., 345 
Louis XIV, King, 85, 120-1, 

129, 168, 173-5, 222, 225-6, 

258, 286, 338, 344 
Lucy, Catherine (afterwards 

Duchess of Northumberland), 

265-6, 343 
Luttrell, Narcissus, 237, 242, 

243, 245, 249, 264, 285-6, 

287, 288, 295, 301, 303, 340, 

341 

Lyttelton, Sir Charles, 87, 194, 

254, 255 

Macaulay, Lord, 336 
MacCartney, General, 272, 

317-18, 345 
Macky, John, 247 
Mancini, see Duchesse de 

Bouillon, Duchesse de Maza- 

rin, Comtesse de Soissons 
Manley, Mary de la Riviere, 

187-90, 210, 273/:, 283, 

334, ZZ^, 338-9 
Manley, Sir Roger, 273 
Marie-Louise of Orleans, Prin- 
cess, 225 «., 226 
Marischal, Countess, 75 
Marshall, Rebecca, 160 
Marvel], Andrew, 186, 200 
Mary, Princess, afterwards 

Queen, 35, 269 
Mary, Queen (Marie Beatrice 
d'Este), 201, 212, 336 



352 



MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 



May, Baptist, 133, 145, 148, 

151; i53> 224, 333 
Mazarin, Duchesse de (Hor- 

tensiaMancini), 211-13, 240, 

245. 253, 261-3, 275 «., 277, 

320 
Mazarin, Cardinal, 211, 215 
Mello, Dom Francisco de, 54, 

69 
Middleton, Earl of, 288, 317 
Mohun, Lord, 272, 317, 345 
Molina, Count de, 121, 123-4, 

126, 130 
Monk, General, 326 
Monmouth, Duke of, 77-9, 83, 

92, 116, 126, 159, 167, 173, 

204, 206, 249, 257, 264, 

341 

Montagu, Anne, 236 
Montagu, Sir Edward (after- 
wards Lord Sandwich), 34, 
41, 47> 57, 85-6, 88, 97, 98, 
107, no, i2on., 166, 330 
Montagu, Edward (afterwards 
Earl of Manchester), 107, 
166 
Montagu, George, 2 
Montagu, Ralph (afterwards 
Duke of Montagu), 168 n., 
175, 216.^, 338-9 
Montague, Sir James, 304, 344 
Moore, Hon. Robert, 234 
Morland, Sir Samuel, 31 
Morrice, Sir William, 40, 151 
Mulgrave, Earl of, 239 
Muskerry, Lord, 117, 122, 296 
Muskerry, Lady, 117, 29G 

Nicholas, Sir Edward, 80 
Norfolk, Duchess of, 280, 343 
Northampton, Countess of, 265 
Northumberland, Duke of, see 

George Fitzroy 
Northumberland, Duchess of, 

see Catherine Lucy 
Northumberland, Earl of 

(Joceline Percy), 236 



Northumberland, Countess of, 

236 
Northumberland, Dowager 

Countess of, 236, 245 
Nottingham, Lord (Daniel 

Finch, 2nd Earl), 270 

Gates, Titus, 23, 24, 241-2, 

262 
Ogle, Earl of, 236 
Oldham, John, 3 
Oldmixon, John, 250, 330 
Orange, William II, Prince of, 

9 
Orange, Princess of (Mary, 

Princess Royal of England), 

10 

Orange, William Henry, Prince 
of, see William, Prince of 
Orange 

d'Orleans, Due, 173-4, 225 n. 

d'Orleans, Duchesse, see Prin- 
cess Henrietta 

Ormonde, ist Duke of (James 
Butler), 37, 62 ?i., 69, 75, 
185-6, 245-6, 251, 331 

Ormonde, 2nd Duke of (James 
Butler), 320, 321 

Orrery, Lord, 43, 119 

Ossory, Lord, 243 

" Palmer," Anne (afterwards 
Countess of Sussex), 32, 36, 
37, 118, 170, 197, 205-7, 
212-13, 216, 218, 220 jf., 
233-4. 289, 326, 338 
Palmer, Barbara, see Barbara 

Villiers 
Palmer, Sir Edward, 23 
Palmer, Sir Henry, 23 
Palmer, Sir James, 22-4 
Palmer, Roger (afterwards Earl 
of Castlemaine), 22^., 36, 
39-40,44, 52, 56, 70, 71, 74, 
80, 82, loi, 113, 118, 138, 
170, 235, 242-3, 262, 267-9, 
287-9, 323, 326, 327, 332, 
340 



INDEX 



353 



Palmer, Sir Thomas, 23 
Paston, Sir Robert, 1 1 1 
Pattison, Mark, 129 n. 
Peg, Catherine, 206 
Perm, William, 109, 142, 333 
Penalva, Countess of, 69 
Pepys, Samuel, 2, 26, 28, 30, 
34/:, 40, 45-6, 51-3, 66-7, 
7o#-. 77-9. 83/:, 97, 99, 
103/:, 118, 119, 122, 125, 

135. i39#> i44#, 151/. 
159. 165, 166, 168-9, 187, 

242, 330, ZZ^, 334, ^i^- 
Pepys, Mrs., 28, 39, 46, 94, 

160 
Percy, Lady Anne (afterward 

Countess of Chesterfield), 

II 
Percy, Lady Elizabeth 

("Betty"), 236-7, 244-5, 
.265, 339 
Pierce, Dr., 71, 81, 94, 100, 

107,110-11,113,132,134-5, 

148, 151, 152, 333 
Pigeon, Mrs., 229-31 
Poliander (Kirkhoven), John, 9 
Poliander, Monsieur, 10 
Pope, Alexander, 3, 190, 336 
Portsmouth, Duchess of, see 

Louise de Keroualle 
Porter, Captain George, 285-6 
Povy, 83, 119, 144, 154, 168 
Powis, I st Baron (William Her- 
bert), 23 
Powis, William Herbert, 1st 

Marquis of (afterwards Duke 

of), 23, 242, 262, 268-9, 287, 

289 
Powis, Lady, 242, 262, 268 
Prideaux, Humphrey, 208-10, 

215 
Pulteney, Anne (afterwards 

Duchess of Southampton), 

277 

Queroualle, ae Louise de 
Keroualle 



Raby, Lord, 300, 301 
Remigius, Father, 299 
Reresby, Sir John, 2, 48, 145 n.^ 

343 
Rich, Robert, 12 

Richmond, Duke of (Charles 

Stuart), 46, 141-2, 157, 

.333 
Richmond, Duchesses of, see 

FrancesStewart, Mary Villiers 
Richmond, Duke of, see Charles 

Lennox 
Rupert, Prince, 144, 206, 247 
Russell, Sir John, 1 2 
Rutland, Countess of, 244, 263, 

265 
Ruvigny, Marquis of, gi 

St. Albans, Duke of, see Charles 

Beauclerc 
St. Albans, Earl of, 148 
St. Evremond, 26, 36, 213, 262, 

275 «• 
St. John, Barbara (Dame Bar- 
bara Villiers), 3, 197-8 
St. John, Oliver, ist Viscount 

Grandison, 4 
St. Maurice, Marquis de, 175 fi. 
Sandwich, Earl of, see Sir 

Edward Montagu 
Sandwich, Lady, 46, 52, 67, 74, 

118, 332 
"Sarah, Mrs.," 46, 52, 70, 84, 

101, 104, 105 
Savile, Henry, 123, 136, 235 
Scarborough, Sir Charles, 254 
Scott, Lady Anne (afterwards 
Duchess of Monmouth), 92, 
116, 126, 144, 145, 159 
Scott, James, see Duke of Mon- 
mouth 
Scott, Sir Walter, 297 
Sheldon, Archbishop, 158 
Shore, Jane, 45, 115, 244 
Sidney, Henry, 58, 217 «., 219, 

240 
Sidney, Colonel Robert, 328 



2 A 



354 



MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 



Soissons, Comte de, 274 «. 1 

Soissons,Comtessede(01ympia j 

Mancini), 245, 274 «. 
Somers, Lord, 336 
Somerset, Duke of, 244-5 i 

Southampton, ist Duke of, see 

Charles Fitzroy 
Southampton, Duchesses of, see 

Mary Wood, Anne Pulteney 
Southampton, 2nd Duke of, see 

William Fitzroy 
Southampton, Earl of (Thomas 

Wriothesley), 42, 120, 126-7, 

143, 178 

Southesk, Countess of, see Lady 

Anne Hamilton 
Spence, Rev. Joseph, 336 
Stanhope, see ist, 2nd, and 4th 

Earls of Chesterfield 
Stanhope, Arthur, 11 
Stanhope, Henry, 9 
Stanhope, Lord, 300 
Steinman, Mr. G. S., 129 «., 

245^318,327,328, 33i,333> 

337, 338, 341, 343, 344 
Stewart, Frances (afterwards 
Duchess of Richmond), 
89#, 96, 9S-9, 107-8, no, 
121, 124, 126, 130, 133, 136, 
140/-, i57-8> 164, 177, 328, 

329, 330. 333 
Stewart, Dr. Walter, 90 

Stillingfleet, Rev. Edward, 109, 

330 
Streights, Mrs., 299, 305 
Strickland, Miss, 51, 109 
Suffolk, Earl of, 70, 206 
Suffolk, Lady, see Barbara 

Villiers, Countess of Suffolk 
Sunderland, Earl of, 155, 271 
Sunderland, Lady, 58, 155, 240, 

251 
Sussex, Earl of, 37, 205-6, 

212-13, 216, 233-4, 314 

Sussex, Lady, see Anne Palmer 

Swift, Dean, 216, 247, 296-7 

Swift, Hon. Mary, 296 



Talbot, Father Peter, 82-3 
Temple, Sir William, 216, 223, 

253 ''•, 340 
Temple, Dorothy, 340 
Teynham, Lord, 234 
Thackeray, W. M., 272, 319, 

343, 345 ' b-" 

Thynne, Lady Isabella, 129 
Thynne, Thomas, 237, 244, 

340 
Tidcomb, Lieutenant-General, 

274 
Tychborne, Sir Henry, 222 

Vaughan, Catherine, see Cath- 
erine Herbert 

Vaughan, Sir Robert, 23 

Verneuil, Due de, 121, 122, 
126, 129 

Verney, Sir Ralph, 251 

Villars, Charlotte Henrietta, 

.299, z°sff- 

Villiers family, 4 

Villiers, Barbara, afterwards 
Countess of Castlemaine and 
Duchess of Cleveland : her 
ancestry, 3 ; birth and bap- 
tism, 5 ; early years, 8 ; meets 
Lord Chesterfield, 1 3 ; her 
correspondence with him, 
13/;, 26-8, 37, 179; friend- 
ship with Lady Anne 
Hamilton, 16, 119; marries 
Roger Palmer, 24 ; has small- 
pox, 27-8; makes the ac- 
quaintance of Charles H, 
29-31 ; bears her first 
daughter, Anne " Palmer," 
32, 36, 233, 326; Pepys's 
early notices of, 35-9 ; be- 
comes Lady Castlemaine, 
39 ff.; her enmity with 
Clarendon and South- 
ampton, 42, 120, 143, 258, 
321, 334; compared with 
Jane Shore, 45, 115, 244; 
disconsolate over Charles's 



INDEX 



355 



marriage, 47 ; bears her first 
son, Charles Fitzroy, 5 2 ; 
presented to Queen Cath- 
erine at Hampton Court, 
S7> ff-'i leaves her husband's 
house, 70-1 ; at \Vhitehall 
on August 23rd, 1662, 73-4; 
appointed to Queen's bed- 
chamber, 75 ; accepted by 
Catherine, 75, 78, 80 ; 
chooses Charles's ministers, 
80 ; Charles's visits to her 
commented on, 84-6 ; ru- 
mours of her unfaithfulness, 
88 ; and Frances Stewart, 
89^, gd ff-t 142; lodged at 
Whitehall Palace, 93; bears 
Henry Fitzroy, i o i ; her first 
visit to Oxford, loi ff.; be- 
comes Roman Catholic, loS; 
her supposed change of lodg- 
ings, 112, 331 ; bears Char- 
lotte Fitzroy, 113; insulted 
in St. James's Park, 114; 
her part in foreign politics, 
120^ ; alliance with Lauder- 
dale, 122, 345 ; second visit 
to Oxford, 126 ff.; bears 
George Fitzroy, 130 ; her 
heavy expenditure in 1666, 
1 33-4* 141 j banished and 
recalled by Charles, 135; 
her final rupture with Lord 
Castlemaine, 1 38 ; evil in- 
fluence on Charles's char- 
acter, 145 ; violent quarrel 
with him, 147 ; returns to 
Whitehall, 149 ; her share in 
Clarendon's ruin, 150-2; 
sides with Queen Catharine, 
158; her actress rivals, 1 59^ ; 
intrigue with Hart, 160; mock 
petition to her and answer, 
1 6 1-3; presented with Berk- 
shire House, 165 ; her alli- 
ance with the Yorks, 167, 
1 80-1 ; receives a regular 



income, 170; her intrigue 
with Jacob Hall, 171; created 
Duchess of Cleveland, 176; 
has another violent quarrel 
with Charles, 177; builds 
Cleveland House, 179; re- 
ceives grant of Nonsuch, 
183; her quarrel with Or- 
monde, 185-6 ; intrigue 
with Churchill, 187 ff., 
336 ; with Wycherley, 19 1-3, 
336 ; definitely supplanted 
in Charles's favour, 195; 
bears her daughter Barbara, 
195 ; her conduct toward 
Mary Wood, 196 ; loses 
mother and grandmother, 
197 ; quarrels with Arlington, 
204 ; her education of her 
children, 205, 208-10, 317; 
marries two of her daughters, 
205-7 ; her third visit to Ox- 
ford, 209; retires to Paris, 
213 ff.; her intrigue and 
quarrel with Ralph Montagu, 
216-34, 338-9 ; intrigue with 
Chatillon, 218, 221, 225 ; 
and her sons' marriages, 
2 7,^ //.; verse libel on her 
and Duchess of Portsmouth, 
239 ; visits England in 1682, 
244 ; her intrigue with Good- 
man, 248-50, 263, 278-9, 
284-7 3 her grants from 
Charles, 251, 341-2; at 
Court on January 25th, 
1685, 253; question of her 
mention in Charles's dying 
charge, 255-7 ; her treatment 
by him, 257-60 ; interference 
in his government, 258 ; finan- 
cial extortions, 259 ; in the 
reign of James H, 261 //.; 
her alleged son by Goodman, 
263 ; her petition to the 
Treasury, 270 ; moves to 
Arlington Street, 272 ; her 



356 



MY LADY CASTLEMAINE 



acquaintance with Mrs. 
Manley, zT^ff.; secures her 
pension, 290-1 ; meets 
Beau Feilding, 298 ; mar- 
ries him, 299 ; at the Court 
of Anne, 300; her rupture 
with Feilding, 301-3 ; brings 
two actions against him, 
304 ff. ; obtains nuUity of 
marriage, 314; retires to 
Chiswick, 317; death and 
funeral, 320; her character, 
1-3, i82,275#, 283-4, 323, 
etc. ; looks. Preface, 2, 284, 
324, 345 ; her actual letters 
quoted, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 
26, 27, 217, 221^, 228 ff., 
246, 270, 340 
Villiers, Barbara, afterwards 
Countess of Suffolk, 53, 57, 

97 

Villiers, Dame Barbara, see 

Barbara St. John 
Villiers, Charles, see Earl of 

Anglesea 
Villiers, Sir Edward, 3, 4, 53 
Villiers, Colonel Sir Edward, 

70. 97» i7i> i97> 202, 208, 

269 
Villiers, Elizabeth (afterwards 

Countess of Orkney), 269 
Villiers, Francis, 186 
Villiers, Sir George, 4 
Villiers, George, see ist and 

2nd Dukes of Buckingham 
Villiers, John, 3rd Viscount 

Grandison, 70, 152, 171, 186, 

197, 202-3, 208, 269 
Villiers, Mary (afterwards 

Duchess of Richmond), 45-6 
Villiers, Robert (by courtesy 

Viscount Purbeck), 296 
Villiers, Susan (afterwards 

Countess of Denbigh), 292 



Villiers, William, 2nd Viscount 
Grandison, 3, 5, 6, 7, 16,42, 

133 

Wadsworth, Mary, 297, 304/;, 

344 
Waller, Edmund, 106 
Walpole, Horace, 2 
Walter, Lucy, 2, 78 
Watteville, Baron de, 41 
Welby, Lord, 326 
Wells, Winifred, 177, 327 
Wellwood, James, 267-8, 3 
Wentworth, Lady, 299, 301 
Wentworth, Lady Henrietta, 83, 

178 
Whalley, Major-General Ed- 
ward, 34 
Whalley, Captain John, 20 
Wheatley, Mr. H. B., 324, 325, 

333 
Willcock, Mr. John, 345 

William, Prince of Orange, 24, 
216, 263, 269, 272, 289, 290, 
321 

Williamson, Sir Joseph, 200, 
203, 217 n. 

Wilson, Mrs., 145, 151, 165 

Wood, Antony, 102, 103,126-8, 

i3o-i> 329 
Wood, Sir Henry, 196, 248 
Wood, Mary (afterwardsDuchess 

of Southampton), 196, 248 
Wood, Dr. Thomas, 248 
Wotton, Catherine, 9 
Wycherley, William, i9i-3>336 



Yarmouth, Lady, 2 

York, Duke of. See James, 

Duke of York 
York, Duchess of (Anne Hyde), 

39. 77» 83, 117, 149, 167, 

168-9, 1 80- 1, 200 



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